H.H the Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani issued Law No.6 of 2017 amending some provisions of Law No.7 of 1987 on Regulating the Conduct of Business Activities by GCC nationals in the State of Qatar (GCC Business Activities Law) and Law No.7 of 2017 Permitting GCC Companies to Open Branches in Qatar (GCC Companies Branches Law).
GCC Business Activities Law
- Article 2 allows GCC nationals, whether natural or legal persons, to practise retail and wholesale trade in Qatar pursuant to the following:
- regarding a natural person, he/she shall directly be responsible for the management of the activities licensed to him, even if this is done through more than one shop or branch, unless the Ministry of Economy and Commerce believes that there are reasons preventing that;
- for a juristic person, it must be wholly owned by GCC nationals.
- Article 5 limits the activity of GCC nationals for retail trade to direct sales to consumers through authorised shops or branches.
- Article 6 allows GCC nationals practising retail trade to buy goods except for Business Agencies. Furthermore, it allows GCC nationals practising wholesale trade to import and export goods.
GCC Companies Branches Law
- Article 1 allows GCC companies to open branches in Qatar. Such GCC companies will be treated like Qatari companies in accordance with the legislation in force.
- Article 2 sets the conditions as follows:
- the company shall be registered in the commercial register in one of the GCC countries for a period of not less than three years;
- the activity of the company shall be within the economic activities allowed for the nationals of the GCC countries to practise in Qatar;
- the company shall be wholly owned by GCC nationals; and
- the person appointed to manage the branch shall be a GCC national.
Note: The Minister of Economy and Commerce may reduce at his sole discretion the period provided for in 2(i), and may exempt the company from condition 2(iv) based on the proposal of the relevant administrative unit at the Ministry of Economy and Commerce.
- Article 3 allows the Minister of Economy and Commerce to cancel the registration of the Company's branch in the Commercial Register in case of violation of any of the conditions stipulated in Article 2.