Starting a Business in the Philippines as a Foreigner

Business in the Philippines for a Foreigner

The rude awakening of the pandemic has bought a halt at the international business grounds. In 2019, the Philippines was one of the fastest-growing economies globally; the economy contracted at about 9.5% in 2020.

Despite the grim outlook, the economy of the Philippines has got the potential to grow, levering out numerous business opportunities for foreign investors to deep dive!

There’s a slight rebound in 2021, which is boosted by 5.5% by 2022.

Moreover, the economy stands competitive, bilingual and has a pool of talent that widens the business opportunity to a great extent!

Indeed, the idea of starting your business turns out to be fascinating. First, however, one has to know the bare essentials or the rules and regulations set by a jurisdiction.

Company formation in the Philippines has become much more accessible than in other nations, and any idea that pops into your mind to start with is a perfect ground for you. Let’s deep dive!

Company Registration in the Philippines

Today, foreigners are inclined to incorporate a business entity in the zone. Any investor can hold a total share of 40%, while 60% needs to be held by a Filipino national.

The entrepreneurial journey in the Philippines is fascinating, provided one is well-versed with the stages to follow.

Business registration Philippines requires a set of bare essentials that includes:

  • 2 to 15 company directors or incorporators
  • Minimum four office shareholders

Registering a business in the Philippines can be cleared only when the following approvals get obtained:

  • Registration with the SEC
  • Clearance from the Barangay
  • A local permit from the Local Mayor’s Office
  • Registration with Bureau of Internal Revenue

How to Register a Company in the Philippines

Outlined are a few steps that you need to take into consideration to proceed forward, which involves:

Decide the core business activity

First and foremost, you have to be very clear regarding the business activity you want to proceed with.

Make sure to cross-check the business-model functionality, as the requirement differs for offline and online businesses.

Finalize the business activity

Select the business structure that meets the business requirements. One can choose from the below-mentioned structures:

    • Sole proprietorship
    • Partnership firm
    • Corporation firm

Now, if you select a sole proprietorship, you need to approach the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI)

Get Your Documents

The process of documentation is something that you can’t skip. Getting the documents cleared is a challenge, and one has to be very clear regarding the docs to be prepared and submitted.

  • A duly filled application form
  • Valid forms of identification
  • Address and identity proof of the shareholders
  • Selected company name
  • Proof of financial records

Gather the Approvals

As stated in the previous section, one must gather approvals from the noted authorities. Once the necessities are met, the company incorporation reaches the final stage.

Here’s something interesting that you can have a look at, PEZA Registration in the Philippines

Open A Corporate Bank Account

Finally, you need to open a corporate bank account to smoothly carry out the business transactions.

In today’s scenario, investing in an online business turns out to be more feasible as the market is more inclined to app usage or online-delivery mode.

Be it an online or offline business, you need to mark that you need to clear the registration process without any hindrance. Any obstacle in the process might postpone the same for a longer duration.

Thus, for setting up a business in the Philippines, we recommend proceeding with business experts who can assist you in the entire legal process.

Business Setup Worldwide is one of the top business consultants who can help you carry out the same at ease.

Our experts assist you right from incorporation to the bank account opening stage. While you focus on planning your business modes, let us handle the legal compliances.

For more information, contact us today-we’d be glad to assist!


1. Can a domestic corporation in the Philippines hold foreign equity?

Yes, a domestic corporation in the Philippines can hold foreign equity, which can be divided into three brackets:
• >40.01% Foreign equity
• <40% Foreign equity
• 0% Foreign-equity

2. What does the Philippines SEC stand for?

Philippines Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

3. What is Barangay?

In the Philippines, Barangay is the district of your chosen region.

4. What are the requirements after the business gets incorporated?

After the registration process comes to an end, you have to get involved in the following activities that include:
• Accounting and Bookkeeping
• Audit process
• Website building
• Segmenting the department

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