Where to Go

To register a business in the Lao PDR you need to attend the offices of the Department of Enterprise Registration and Management. Depending on the location and the type of business you will register at the central, provincial or district office level. Contact any office and they will be able to advise you of the location you need to attend.See details below :
 
1.    Central Office (Ministry of Industry and Commerce). Larger legal entities within certain sectors must be registered at the central office.
        Department of Enterprise Registration and Management
        Tel ( 856 21 ) 412 011 Fax ( 856 21 ) 453 865
        Website : www.ero.gov.la

2.    Province Level (Provincial Industry and Commerce Department) - these offices are in or near the provincial capital. Provincial offices register legal entities but not individual businesses.Contact central office for the contact details of the provincial office.
 
3.    District Level (District Industry and Commerce Office ). District offices are responsible for the registration of individual businesses (those not using a legal entity). Contact central office for the location of your district office.

 

Business Activity Type

To register a business in the Lao PDR you need to know the classification of your business activity, as defined by an ISIC codes. Certain business activities are subject to special control - these business activities are known as the negative list. Business activities on the negative list will be subject to additional registration requirements which may prolong the time taken for registration.

A business can be registered for more than one business activity.

 

What you will Need

When attending the office to register a business, you should bring three copies of the following documents (see downloads for copies of the forms):

1.    A completed business application form for the type of business you wish to register

2.    A photo copy of your Passport or ID card or Family Identity Book

3.    For foreign investors - an Investor CV

4.    A color passport style photo of the Director or Manager of the business (3cm x 4cm size, taken within 3 months of application )

5.    Company Resident Certificate

Additional documents will be required when registering a legal entity rather than an individual.

 

Enterprise Registration Procedure

An investor who intends to conduct business in his/her own right, or through a legal entity, shall give notice by submitting application form for enterprise registration to the relevant enterprise registrar. Depending on the business activity the enterprise registration process may require the approval of one or more agencies. This will be managed by the registrar as part of enterprise registration.

A business name must be reserved prior to or during the registration process if the business is not an individual business. There is a separate application form for the business name.

A business can register to conduct business under more than one activity category (as defined by an ISIC code) at a time. Each activity might require approval from an external agency. This will be handled by the registrar as part of the enterprise registration process.

 

Enterprise Registration Processing Time

The registration process should normally take no longer than 10 working days. If the business is for an activity on the Negative List (a list of activities that require additional checks by the government) the registration process will include submission of the application to the relevant agency.

 

Documents required to conduct Business

Once business registration is completed, the following items are required for running a business:

  • Enterprise License
  • Tax Registration Certificate - this will include a 12 digit Tax ID Number
  • One or more operating license related to the type of activity the business is performing (from the government agency relevant to that business activity). These licenses may require yearly renewal.
  • Company Seal

In addition you may require:

  • VAT registration
  • Registration of your workers for social security
  • Approval for company signage

 Additional documentation may be require for certain business activities.