The Ministry of Economy and Commerce (MEC) has decided to issue licenses for QR. 1,020 per annum for practicing commercial activities at homes, as part of the ministry’s initiative to encourage small businesses and self-employment.
The new measure is part of the ministry’s Decision No 242 for 2016 to promote low cost commercial activities, which are basically based on personal skills, and where the use of equipment that cause inconvenience to others or hazardous materials are not involved.
With the new regulation, following activities similar to the ones listed below can be practiced at home:
- Sewing, embroidery, craft works, etc
- Events services (Photography of weddings and parties)
- Electronic services (CAD, Web designing, Engineering drawings, etc)
- Business services (Printing, photo copying and binding of textbooks, etc)
- Cosmetic activities (Making perfumes, incense, and other cosmetic items)
- Food activities (Cooking, processing, delivery from home etc)
- Gifts Making (Gift cards, artifacts and packaging)
- Flower arrangement (natural or artificial)
“Besides, the practice of these activities would help having a considerable profit margin for the licensee and his family,” as per the MEC statement published in Gulftimes.
To be issued a license to practice such commercial activities at home, the applicant must be not less than 18 years of age, be a resident of the targeted house and the requested activity should be operationally compatible with the nature of the surrounding community. The applicant should get the necessary approvals to practice the targeted activity from the entities concerned in the country, submit a building accomplishment certificate and the Civil Defense clearance certificate in case of cooking activities.
According to the general regulations of the initiative, the license shall be limited to one activity only, the licensee shall not be issued more than one license for a single house, the licensee shall have to display an information board at the entrance of the house showing the commercial name of the project and the license number but no advertising or promotion boards, flags, or digital display on the outer walls of the house. The requested activity should not impact the traffic flow in the area or cause any inconvenience to the neighbors, and the applicant shall not sell directly from the house to customers but will have the option of home delivery.
MEC has set the annual fees for issuing such a commercial license at QR1,020, which can be subsequently paid during each yearly renewal.