Belgium lies at the political heart of the European Union and it is the most cosmopolitan of all EU states. This may go some way to explaining its strong free-market approach to foreign investors and newly incorporated businesses.

The authorities impose relatively few restrictions on foreign companies operating within the country, and bar Luxembourg, it is the most prosperous country in the EU.

The most common forms of Shelf Company available in Belgium are:

  • Company Limited by Shares (S.A./N.V.)
  • Private Limited Liability Company (S.P.R.L./B.V.B.A.)

Other corporate forms available are:

  • One-Person Private Limited Company (EBVBA/SPRLU): a limited liability company set up by one person. The minimum share capital is €18,550, with a minimum deposit of €12,400.
  • Cooperative Company With Limited Liability (CBVA/SCRL): a co-operative company founded by at least three people. The minimum share capital is €18,500, with a min. deposit of €6,200 and the rest to be paid within 5 years.
  • Sole Trader: a business set up by one person with full liability. Documents must be provided to prove competency in a given craft.
  • European Economic Interest Grouping (EEIG): a cross-border partnership comprising partners from EU countries. No capital is required, there is no need for separate financial accounts, and partners are taxed individually.

Foreign companies looking to incorporate a company in Belgium may operate either through a Subsidiary (incorporated under Belgian law) or as a Branch (incorporated under the law of the country where the parent is based).

The minimum amount of share capital is €61,500, which must be 25% or more paid up. For a branch there are no minimum capital requirements.

Belgium guarantees the freedom to set up a company and transfer capital to all foreign companies and to any foreign investor who wishes to settle in the country, in order to start a commercial or industrial operation.

  • Except for certain types of business such as banking, insurance and transport, no prior authorisation is needed
  • Foreign capital may be brought into the country without restriction
  • There is no preliminary authorisation required for takeovers or joint ventures
  • There are a variety of tax breaks, including one which allows a multinational company to provide financial and managerial services virtually tax-free

If you’re considering how to buy a Shelf Company in in Belgium then please contact us for expert advice and information.

A detailed Summary of Belgium Corporate Taxes can be found here.