Malta Company Formation FAQs

Charlene Ciantar | Published on 22 Jun 2013 | Updated on 30 Sep 2019

Malta Company Formation FAQs

What are the steps to form a company in Malta?

The process to incorporate a company within Malta is not lengthy; 

  1. One needs to submit all the essential due diligence documents together with the incorporation documents;
  2. A bank account needs to be opened and a share capital must be deposited. The minimum share capital of a private company is €1,165, whilst for public companies, it stands at €46,588. Even though an individual may opt not to open a bank account, he/she still needs to prove the initial share capital. 
  3. Memorandum and Articles of Association are then drawn up to meet the shareholder’s requirements, in accordance with the Companies Act.
  4. A registration fee must also be paid, which varies depending on the share capital of the company. A private limited liability company can have from one to fifty shareholders.

How long does it take to set up a company within Malta?

Incorporating a company in Malta is quite straight-forward and usually only takes a couple of days. However, the exact time it takes to incorporate a company depends on whether the necessary documentation and information are available and on the type of company being incorporated.

The documentation and information are then passed on to the Registrar of Companies. If the individual is an EU citizen or company, then a company can normally be incorporated within 24-48 hours. Despite the fact that non-EU citizens and companies can still set up a company within Malta, if they intend to commence operations exclusively and directly within Malta there are certain limitations which are imposed.

What types of companies can be incorporated within Malta?

The standard commercial companies can all be set up within Malta, including both limited and public liability companies (Ltd and plc) as well as commercial partnerships. However, there also exist specific regulations to permit the incorporation of financial and banking entities, investment companies, companies that manage hedge funds, portfolios and investments, SICAVs and protected cell companies for insurance purposes.

Can I set up a company to hold overseas investments whilst undertaking trading activities as well? 

Yes, this is possible. A company can be set up to carry out trading activities whilst holding local or overseas investments. If the company is a single-member company i.e. it is owned only by one shareholder, then it is only allowed to carry out one main activity.

What does company domiciliation mean, and can a company set-up in Malta re-domicile? 

A company is domiciled in Malta if its managed and controlled directly in Malta. Therefore, a company is domiciled in that jurisdiction where all the legal documents and the company’s mail is received. 

Furthermore, under Maltese law, re-location or re-domiciliation of companies is allowed. This means that a company which is registered in a foreign country may be-de-registered there and registered as a body corporate in Malta.  There are four conditions that need to be satisfied in order for a company to be eligible to re-domiciliation:

1. The foreign country where the company is currently registered must permit outward re-domiciliation of companies;  
2. The foreign company wishing to re-domicile to Malta must be structured as a corporate structure contemplated by the Maltese Companies Act;  
3. The company’s Memorandum and Articles of Association must permit re-domiciliation (this may be amended);  
4. The foreign company must be incorporated or registered in an approved jurisdiction.

What are the benefits of setting up a company within Malta?

Malta is a well-regulated jurisdiction, with various laws permitting different types of entities, ranging from private or public companies, trusts, foundations and protected cell companies. Malta has also established a number of strong industries, such as intellectual property, remote gaming, financial services and maritime/aviation. Malta is global player in the field of pharmaceuticals with several research laboratories and a law regulating the cultivation and processing of medical cannabis. The costs of incorporating and operating a company within Malta are very reasonable, in fact, professional facilities and service fees run at much lower rates than in comparable jurisdictions in Europe.  

Malta offers foreign investors an efficient tax system that has been approved by the European Commission and the OECD, whereby qualifying shareholders may receive a partial refund of corporate tax paid. 


 

 


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