Invest in Yemen - FAQs

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    Invest and the GIA     Labor Related     Business Opportunities
    Legal Concerns     Real Estate Related     Customs Related
    Tax Related
 Invest and the GIA
Q1. What is an investment project?

An investment project is an activity established by the investor to produce a good or provide a specific service , and enjoy the privileges, facilities and guarantees as stipulated in the investment law.

Q2. What are the privileges ,benefits and guarantees awarded to the investment project?

All privileges, exemptions and guarantees are stated in the Investment Law No.15 of the year 2010 articles (5,6,7,8,9,10) . For more information please download "The Investor Guide".

Q3. What is the difference in the benefits, guarantees, and exemptions offered by the investment law for large and small projects?

Q4. What is the minimum capital for an investment project?

There is no minimum capital for the investment project.

Q5. Are there any lands reserved for investors?

The country shall provide land for strategic projects within the lands of the country in accordance with special agreements signed between the owner of the project and the related governmental authority.

Q6. Can companies be registered with the GIA?

Yes, there is an office responsible for this service provided that the company has investment purposes.

Q7. What are the documents required to register an investment project?
Fill a registration form in Arabic for the investment project and attach with the following documents:
  • A Copy of the Personal or Family Identity Card of the Project Owner or the Passport when it comes to a foreign investor, while if a delegate is the one present, then simply his ID card will do.
  • A Power of Attorney duly legalized by the competent agencies for authorization by the project owner or investor to follow up the registration procedures of the project.
  • The Commercial Registry of companies and standing corporations (being valid at the time).
  • The Project's Contract of Association duly legalized by the competent bodies in case of presenting an application for investment by more than one participant.
  • Project Plans as determined by the resolutions issued by the executive commission.
Q8. What are the required fees to register a project?
-          Y.R. 5500 = cost of the registration form.
-          Y.R. 20000 = registration form proposal fees.


Q9. What about the One-Stop-Shop and how it applies in GIA and its branches?
The General Investment Authority works with the one-stop-shop concept implementing the provisions of the investment law where many governmental offices are located in GIA, including the Customs office, Tax office, Work and Labor office, Trade and Industry office, Fisheries office and Environment office. These offices have complete authority to do all the tasks that their ministries are doing. The GIA supervises the performance of the offices and evaluates the services offered based on the rules and regulations that were set by the authority.
 Labor Related
Q10. What are the procedures required to obtain a Work Permit for non-Yemeni Workers?
The following are the documents and fees required for submission to the GIA Labor Office to obtain a Work Permit for non-Yemenis:
1)      An official letter from the employer (Individual, Company and Institution).
2)      A copy of the General Investment Authority permit for the project.
3)       A copy of academic qualifications and certificates of applicant (translated into Arabic if it is in another language) and certified by theYemeni Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
4)       A copy of the employment contract signed by both parties and with official stamp of the company.
5)      A filled application form issued by the GIA.
6)      A copy of passport + photographs (4 × 6).
7)       A Health Report confirming that the employee is free from any communicable diseases, which is issued by the General Administration of Occupational Health and Safety in Sana’a, (located at  Baghdad Street 409 576) as well as a Clean Health Report concerning HIV-AIDS, which is provided by either the Central Lab or Athawrah Hospital.
8)       Disclaimer Certificate from the previous employer (in the case that the employee had worked for another employer in Yemen).
9)       Copy of the Commercial Registry of company.
10) Copy of company records cataloging Yemeni and foreign labor of the project.
11)   Copy of Licensing Service:
(A) From the Ministry of Health for those working in the field of medicine, especially in the field of health careers and the General Medicines Authority.
(B) From the Ministry of Higher Education (for staff at universities and colleges) and from the Ministry of Education (for staff in the field of basic and secondary education).
(C) From the Ministry of Technical Education and Vocational Training (for staff in schools and technical institutes).

Fees (in Yemeni Riyal – YR)
1 – The application fee is 12500 YR, and the renewal also costs 12500 YR. There is a penalty of 150 YR per day, when there is a delay.
3 – There is one time fee of 5000 YR that goes to the government’s Professional Training Fund.
Q11. What is the percentage of Non-Yemeni Laborers allowed to be hired by the investor?
The minimum number of employees for an investment project is 100. Investors have the right to employ the non-Yemenis. However, they are encouraged to offer as much employment and training to the greatest possible number of Yemenis for an investment project.
 Business Opportunities
Q12. Are there any industrial zones?
A12. Yes. There are many industrial zones in Yemen, the most prominent being Lahj, Abyan, Al-Hodeidah, and Al-Mukalla.
Q13. What sectors have the highest priority?
A13. There are currently a number of investment opportunities in various areas of services and products, for example: -Quarrying Industry (glass, cement, minerals extraction, etc) -Tourism Projects (hotels, parks, etc) -Manufacturing: oAggregate industry oPetrochemical industry oEstablishing new refineries -Transport Projects (new sear ports and railways establishment) -Housing Projects (establishing housing units). -Agriculture (land reclamation and cultivation, catering, dairy, etc) -Fisheries (packaging and bottling) -Infrastructure Projects (electricity, highways, etc)
Q14. In what sector are the larger investment projects and current ones concentrated?
A14. The bigger investment projects are mainly concentrated in the industrial sector, specifically in the iron, cement, beverages and tobacco, tourism and real estate sectors.
 Legal Concerns
Q15. Are there any credit facilities or loans provided by the government to investors?

There are no related resources but the investor has the option of obtaining any kind of loan from local banks.

Q16. Is risk insurance an available option?
Yes. It is possible for an investor to secure his investment project to non-commercial risks in any of the following international bodies:
-          The Islamic Corporation for Investment and Export Insurance.
Q17. Does the law guarantee equality between domestic and foreign investors?
A17. Yes. In fact some the most important points included in the Yemeni Investment Law legally guarantee: -Equality between the Yemen and non-Yemeni investors in all rights and duties. -The possibility of having a non-Yemeni investor own up to 100% of an investment project, land and real-estate.
Q18. What is the proportion of foreign workers allowed in an investment project?
A18. 10% of the total employment capacity.
Q19. Do exemptions vary from one region to another?
A19. Exemptions vary between projects undertaken in the investment zone (a) located in main cities and the investment zone (b) located in remote areas. The former zone enjoys up to 7 years of profit tax exemption and the latter zone up to 9 years.
 Real Estate Related
Q20. What are the facilities provided by the Office of Public Works?
     I.            Analyze studies and designs for an investment project and to validate it for its conformity with conditions and technical standards of the country.
    II.            Issue building permits for investment projects in coordination with the offices of the Ministry in the Secretariat and the other Provinces.
   III.            Supervise the conduct of these projects in accordance with specifications.
Q21. Can you cooperate with us to facilitate the procedures with the managers of the Ministry's offices in the provinces?

Yes, and it is done through the communication with the Directors of the Ministry's Offices in the Secretariat and the various provinces to facilitate the procedures.

Q22. Can we get an activity license issued by your office?
No, because issuing such a license needs a large crew; but we can help in facilitating any problems or blocks for an investment project at offices of the Ministry.
 Customs Related
Q23. What are the conditions and documentation required to obtain a release order on customs, licensed under investments attached to fixed assets and production requirements?
The following is required
-          Submission of a valid investment decision.
-          Submission of the original paperwork and amendments (if available).
-          Provide the required documents set forth in the regulations of the investment law.
-          The original invoice.
-          Tax number.
-          Authorization from the persons responsible of the clearance based on the form provided by GIA.
-          Apply for customs clearance based on the form provided by GIA.
-          Provide the permits from the relevant authorities for the imports of agriculture, health, security and other goods or products
 Tax Related
Q24. What are the typical taxes applied and their rates?
First: Income Taxes:
1)      There are income taxes collected based on the annual earnings of a taxpayer from commercial and industrial professions as well as from noncommercial and nonindustrial employment. The taxes are on wages, salaries, profits, allowances and structured as follows:

Profits, Allowances
Wages, Salaries
Sales Taxes
Exemption Limit
3% of the
taxable income
more than $98
20% for Residents
Amounts in Excess of


2)      35% of the income tax is collected by the respective employer and the funds are provided to the National Tax Authority.
Second: General Sales Tax (GST)
A general sales tax (GST) is imposed by 5% of the value of goods sold and services (local and imported).
The GST is imposed by a limited percentage according to schedule number (3) of the law. Below are some tax rates on miscellaneous items:
Cigarettes and other smoking products: 90% of value.
Qat: 20%
Precious Minerals: 2%
Semi-manufactured Minerals and Manufactured: 3%
Mobile Services (domestic & international): 10%
Third: Real Estate & Vehicles Taxes
Besides those taxes paid annually by the taxpayer, there are also Real Estate Taxes and Vehicle Taxes which should be paid. Both taxes are ordered as the following:

Real Estate Taxes
Vehicle Taxes
Cost of one month’s rent as tax
25 Fils per liter of Oil
15 Fils per liter of  Diesel

Q25. How are the collected amounts handled during the exemption period?

It is done through an adjustment to note the discounting of them from other taxes.

Q26. How can the Investor get the Tax Number?
Investors can get a tax number by filling out the particular form attached with a copy of the investment registration decision and submitting the information to the GIA Tax Office. The process takes just a few hours.
Q27. How can the Investor get the Tax Card?

Investors are advised to contact the GIA Tax office for the precise information and procedures to obtain the tax card in relation to his/her investment.

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P.O Box: 19022
Hadda Street, Opposite to Al-Rahman Mosque, Beside Shammr Tourist & Trading,
Sanaa, Republic of Yemen

Tel: (+967) 1 434-312/13
Fax: (+967) 1 434-314

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