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Opening a Trading Company in the Philippines

Opening a Trading Company in the Philippines

The Philippines is one of the most important economies in Southeast Asia and relies on the trading industry. Operating in the import-export sector in the Philippines implies registering a business with the Trade Register and obtaining several licenses before starting any commercial activity.

If you want to open a trading company in the Philippines, our local advisors can guide you through the company formation procedure.

Company registration in the trading sector in the Philippines

In order to set up a trading business in the Philippines, foreign investors must first incorporate the company with the local Companies Registrar and then obtaining the Barangay Clearance. The company must also register for taxation and for VAT, as they will issue invoices which are required when carrying out trading activities.

Our company formation agents in the Philippines will explain the complete steps of the incorporation procedure.

Trading companies follow the IAS/IFRS accounting principles, prepare and file audited financial statements each year. Our certified public accountants in Philippines can assist business owners with preparing and filing the annual statements, along with complete bookkeeping services, payroll, tax planning, and personalized consulting solutions.

Registering with the Philippines Bureau of Customs for trading purposes

Once the company is registered with the local authorities, it must also register with the Bureau of Customs (BOC) in order to be allowed to operate as a trader. This implies obtaining an import or export license, or both licenses.

The following licenses must be obtained in order to be allowed to complete trading activities in the Philippines:

  •           an import clearance license from the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and then from the BOC;
  •           an export license from the Exporters Confederation and then from the BOC;
  •           for import/export activities registration with the BIR and BOC is required;
  •           other special permits are required depending on the types of products brought in or taken out of the country.

It must be noted that Philippines trading companies are required to have various documents accompanying the merchandise when entering or exiting the country.

Other licensing requirements for Philippines trading companies

Trading companies in the Philippines can also be required to obtain other licenses, among which:

  •           a special permit from the Food and Drugs Bureau if they import or export food or drug-related products;
  •           a commodity clearance from the Bureau of Product Standards in the Philippines;
  •           an export certificate from the Garments and Textile Industry Development Office for companies exporting textile products.

For assistance in setting up a trading company in the Philippines, please contact us.

If you are interested in other matters, such as how to immigrate to Philippines if you choose to open a company here, our team can answer your questions. It is useful to keep in mind that the country imposes certain criteria, as well as an immigration quota (a limited number of permitted foreign nationals who are granted this status). Our team can give you more details, based on your nationality.