Have you been looking for ways and procedures for starting a business in Zambia as a foreigner? Today we cover every detail to help you have your company registered in minutes. The procedure for registering a business in Zambia depends on the type of business. Currently, the procedure starts with business name clearance. You will need to process this online or submit it in person as discussed later in this article. The Business Names Act No. 16 of 2011, governs the Registration of all Businesses.

What is the procedure of registering a company in Zambia?

First of all, the most important thing to take note of is the type of business you want to start. Has it already been set up in your own country? Probably you want to register a new business in Zambia, together with its name? The good part is that foreign businesses in Zambia are allowed to incorporate and register companies as fully owned or sole trader enterprises.

According to the Zambian Companies Act of 2017. Any foreigner can personally register and own a business or company without any shares owned by Zambians. Starting a Business in Zambia as a foreigner is easy and most people recommend registering as a limited liability company (LLC).

Business registration in Zambia through the Companies Registration Agency (PACRA) only takes a few minutes. But you will need to wait 48 hours for the application review.

Legal requirements of setting up a business in Zambia

  • Fill in your application forms
  • Submit Business application form for business registration
  • Business name clearance form
  • For business incorporations, you must apply for an application to incorporate private limited shares
  • Application for business or company is incorporated by guarantee
  • Certificate from the registrar of companies or director
  • Official stamped and signed declaration as proof of Compliance
  • Pay for registration fees
  • Original receipts as proof of payments.
  • Company profile
  • Identification documents for business owners / founder / partners

Procedure for registering a business in Zambia

PACRA online business name registration procedure and steps to register your company within minutes: Here are 4 easy steps on how to register your company in Zambia online.

  • Online Company Registration

Step 1: Open your browser, either on a mobile or computer device. Then type https://www.pacra.org.zm to access the Patents and Companies Registration Agency registration online portal.

Step 2: Click on the signup tub if you do not have an account. Enter your email and register as a new user.

Step 3: Enter the proposed names you wish to register for your business. Type your first business name choice, second choice, and third choice.

Your names should not be too long. For example, if you want to register a company named “Tec quality limited’. In the available next option enter “Tec quality solutions” or “Tec providers limited”. The available name is what get as a certified name for your business.

Take Note:

  • Your business name should not be too long
  • Cannot contain numbers and letters
  • Should be neutral and at least represent the type of industry

Step 4: Make payments. Do this through debit card, mobile money, or direct in person by visiting Paccra’s main offices near you.


Starting a Business in Zambia as a foreigner

Any foreigner can set up a business but according to the law, you need two or more directors with one being a Zambian citizen. This is easier, less paperwork and faster within three working days at most within the week it will be ready to operate

  1. If you are a company already registered in your home country, you will approach PACRA, the registrar of patents and business in Lusaka, Zambia, with all the documents of your company, and collect the relevant forms to be filled. Upon submission, you will pay a non-refundable fee of ZMW 5,000.00, approximately US$ 518.00. After that, you will register with Zambia Revenue Authority for tax compliance issues, and will also with NAPSA, a national pension scheme. This process can take three days maximum.
  2. If you are coming to set up a new business in Zambia, you are required to have a local address and at least one local Zambian representative in your share structure, and he or she must have either an equal or higher share percentage. You can register with the Zambia revenue authority and NAPSA. it will cost ZMW 707.00 or USD 73.26 and will take two days. Additionally, there are organizations like Zambia Development Agency and other similar entities to approach preferential benefits like tax exemptions. But do this at a later day and by then your company will be in operation.