Regulating licenses for shops in Kuwait

An application for licenses for shops in the State of Kuwait is submitted to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry with the intention of opening or owning any facility or office to engage in trade or to practice a profession or craft, with the exception of professions or trades subject to special laws, decrees or decisions.

Date of issuance of shops licenses

The license is issued within three working days from the date of submitting the license application that fulfills the conditions, documents and data. In the event that this period lapses without fulfilling those conditions and documents, the application is considered rejected. If there is a change in the license, it is entered in the Commercial Register.

The license is issued temporarily for a period of ninety days from the date of its issuance, provided that all necessary approvals are met to issue the permanent license during this period.

Duration of the commercial license

The term of the commercial license shall be four years from the date of its issuance, unless the relevant authorities stipulate a shorter period. The licensee shall be obligated to submit financial statements on the legally prescribed dates, and in case of breach of this commitment, the license shall be cancelled.

Conditions that must be met by the license applicant

Several conditions must be met by the license applicant:

  • To be a natural or legal person, of Kuwaiti nationality or holding the nationality of one of the countries of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf.
  • He must be at least 21 years old if the license applicant is a natural person, owner of the capital of the facility and responsible for managing it, and managing it for his own account, and if it is a company, it must be incorporated in accordance with the Companies Law.
  • If the license applicant is a foreign company or one of its branches, he must fulfill the conditions set forth in the laws, regulations, or decisions regulating the practice by foreign companies or one of its branches of the activity that he wishes to obtain a license to practice in Kuwait.

Cases in which a license may not be granted

A license may not be granted to a person who has been convicted of a crime of bankruptcy by fraud, commercial fraud, theft, fraud, breach of trust, forgery or use of forged papers, unless he has been rehabilitated. That was with the permission of the bankruptcy judge.

Transfer of ownership of the commercial establishment to the incompetent or incompetent

The guardian, custodian or custodian of any of them, in the event the ownership of the licensed commercial establishment is transferred to an incompetent or incompetent one, must apply to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry to amend the license upon obtaining the court’s permission to invest their money in trade, and in this case the license must include the name of the guardian or guardian or trustee for any of them.

Procedures for the transfer and assignment of a commercial license

Passing of the license to the heirs

In the event the license is transferred to the heirs, it must include the following conditions and documents:

  • The license is valid when the license is transferred
  • That the appointed agent be from among the heirs or his representative who is permitted to practice trade
  • In the case of professional activities, the necessary conditions for practicing them (the heir’s representative or his representative) must be met.

The documents required for the transfer of the license to the heirs are:

  • death certificate
  • limit heredity
  • Power of attorney from the heirs to one or more of them who meet the required conditions
  • A letter of approval from the competent authority for the guardian, custodian or trustee when necessary

The license is issued in the name of the heirs, and there is the name of those who represent them in practicing the activity or profession. The heirs are given a sufficient period of time to regularize their status, with a maximum of six months, and another period or periods may be granted at the request of the concerned parties.

Assignment of the license to others

The license transfer request shall be submitted by the assignor and the assignee or their legal representatives along with the required documents. The waiver request shall be signed before the competent employee, and the following conditions must be fulfilled for the licensing assignment:

  • The activity to be relinquished must not be one of which the license has been suspended, with the exception of cases of assignment between relatives up to the second degree
  • The case of assignment does not include one of the forms of exit of the assignor from a company established between him and the assignee in the activity for which the license to practice has been suspended.
  • The licensed activity must elapse in the same location and in the same activity for a period of no less than three months
  • That the assignee of the license fulfills the conditions for practicing the activity or profession subject of the license

Any change in the license shall be published in the Official Gazette, and the commercial registry of such change shall not be entered until fifteen days have elapsed from the publication without submitting any objection to this change, and no objection shall be accepted unless it is based on a court ruling or order. My loyalty is enforceable.

If you are looking for a Kuwaiti law firm that specializes in providing legal services to the securities, capital and stock market activities, you can count on us at Taqneen, Law Firm and Legal Consultations.

To book an appointment or request legal advice about the duties of securities companies in the optimal implementation of clients’ orders, we are pleased to receive your inquiries at (