Starting a Company Abroad

Starting a company overseas is no easy task-there is alot of red tape involved. In addition to that you also have to be cognizant of the business environment in that particular country. In this article Malta will be used as an example of what sort of requirements must be met when looking to start a company on abroad. Some of the main issues to consider are: legislation, business culture and health and safety.

Bureaucratic hurdles

Before any business can be started the company has to be fully registered. This involves providing a name, putting up the minimal capital investment, registering at the company registry, obtaining a trade license, tax identification number and employee registration. There is also the issue of complying with the law with regard to health and safety.

Health and Safety

In Malta the law states that the employer is responsible for health and safety in the workplace. Employees may choose their own representatives to ensure that health and safety requirements are met, but the employer is still responsible. The law does not provide for specific committees, therefore it is up to the employer and employees to organise a committee if they choose to do so.


The employer has the responsibility to do the following in the area of health and safety:

  • Inform employees about risks and carry out risk assessments
  • Inform employees of all preventative measures to be taken
  • Inform employees of safety protocols in the event of an emergency. For example, emergency exits, fire alarms, safety equipment and contact information for emergency services.
  • Inform employees of any specific directives or information with regard to health and safety by outside agencies, such as government health officials or company appointed health agencies.
  • Allow workers or their representatives to make proposals with regard to health and safety in the workplace.

Maltese legislation comprises laws that govern health and safety in general and these apply to all sectors in the country. But there are also specific laws for sectors that are especially sensitive to health and safety such as construction, manufacturing and mining. Employers should be versed in the all safety laws depending on the sector they are in.

Legal Services

Employers who are looking to do business in Malta should have access to competent legal services to help them navigate through the requirements of Maltese law- particularly with health and safety. Legal firms can help you with lawsuits you might face or to prevent future lawsuits. When you have legal counsel to fall back, doing business in Malta will be profitable and safe.

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