Start your own business in another EU country
As an EU citizen, you're entitled to set up your own business in any EU country or to set up a subsidiary branch of an existing EU-based business in another Member State of the EU. The requirements are different for each country, so it's important to read up on the procedures you'll need to go through. To make it as easy as possible, we've set out some links below where you can find the information you need.
The EU encourages its Member States to meet certain targets; you should be able to:
- set up a business in no more than three working days;
- pay no more than €100;
- handle all the procedures through a single administrative body;
- complete all registration formalities online;
- register a company in another EU country online (through points of single contact).
As these are only recommendations (and not rules), start by finding out how much setting up a business will cost in practice, how long it takes and whether there is a single administrative body to arrange your start-up in the country where you would like to get your business off the ground.
Via the ‘Your Europe’ start-ups portal, you can check the more detailed requirements for each country, i.e. the laws you have to take into account and administrative procedures you have to go through. Also, the ‘Your Europe’ business portal has information on matters such as VAT and customs, selling abroad, product requirements and environmental labels.
If you want to run your business across more than one EU country, you could consider setting up a European company (societas europaea). This allows you to transfer your registered office to another EU country without having to wind up the company first, and to involve staff employed in more than one country.
Want to see for yourself what it's like to be an entrepreneur in another EU country? Go on Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs, get tips and tricks from an experienced entrepreneur for six months and watch your business flourish!