Starting a business in Monaco: A comprehensive guide


There are many powerful reasons to consider starting a business in Monaco, from the advantageous tax system to the Principality’s resident pool of wealthy clientele that make up most of the Monegasque economy. When you also take into account the superb infrastructure, the high premium put on security, and the ever-increasing value of Monaco’s real estate due to the limited land area, buying a Monaco business for sale becomes a no-brainer for the savvy entrepreneur.

What can you do to set yourself up for success in Monaco?

By starting a business in Monaco, you immediately put yourself ahead of the competition if you can secure your premises in one of the most exclusive patches of earth. Imagine working in your shop or office each day, looking out to vast views of mountains and sea, and impressing VIP clients with long lunches at Monte Carlo’s Michelin-starred restaurants and beach clubs.

Monaco has just 38,000 residents, and about 1 in 3 of them are millionaires – your new customers. There is also a constant stream of tourists and visitors passing by retail and office premises.

If your new company is looking to make an impact, there’s no better way to do it than by buying a commercial property for sale in Monaco. Here are some top tips to ensure you start your Monaco business the right way.

Starting a business in Monaco: things to know

  • There is a multitude of business and investment opportunities in Monaco, with tourism and hospitality, cosmetics and fashion, transport and pharmaceuticals, precision engineering and electronics as some of the most important industries.
    Monaco applies no income tax for its residents.
  • Monaco is not formally part of the EU but does use the euro and has reciprocal agreements with France, meaning that many EU laws do apply.
  • The Monegasque government has an international outlook and welcomes foreign investors and business people to operate in the Principality, so starting a business in Monaco is made relatively easy. You should contact the Monaco Business and Welcome Office to discuss your plans and make useful contacts, including with the Monaco Economic Board and local banks, accountants and notaries.
  • Whether you need a permit to engage in business will depend on the legal entity of your business, as well as the nature of your product or service. See more information here.
    If you are selling an original product, you may wish to apply for a trademark or patent in Monaco through the Economic Development Direction office. Trademarks apply for 10 years from the date of application (renewals possible), while patents have a maximum of 20 years duration from the date of the deposit paid.
  • For businesses hiring employees, the minimum wage in Monaco is the same as that of France (€11,27/hour as of 2023), plus 5% to account for travel costs, as the majority of employees will live outside the Principality. Annual leave is five weeks, and there are 11 public holidays.
  • Once you have found your Monaco business premises for sale, you’ll need to declare a registered office as well as organise inspection visits from the Technical Commission for Hygiene, Security and Environmental Protection, as well as the Department of Forward Studies, Urban Planning and Mobility.

Can a foreigner start a business in Monaco?

It is possible for foreigners to start a business in Monaco. Only about a quarter of the residents of Monaco are Monegasque. This means that the biggest majority of business owners are foreigners. Setting up a company in Monaco involves several steps, including choosing a company name, preparing the articles of association, registering the company with the Monaco Trade and Industry Chamber, and obtaining the necessary licences and permits. It’s important to know that in order for a foreigner to open a business in the Principality, he or she has to buy or rent a property in Monaco. Although most of the information you need can be found online, it is still a good idea for foreigners to seek professional advice on Monegasque company formation.

Administrative steps when doing business in Monaco

  1. Register your business in the Trade and Industry Register.
  2. Request a Statistical Identification Number from the Monegasque Institute of Statistics.
  3. Declare the business or company to the Department of Tax Services.
  4. Register with social security orgs: Sickness, Accident and Maternity Insurance for the Self-Employed (CAMTI), and The Independent Pensions Fund for the Self-Employed (CARTI)
  5. If hiring staff, create an employer’s file with the Employment Office.

How to find the perfect commercial space in Monaco?

Monaco’s reputation for glamour and exclusivity confers immediate status on your business. If you’re thinking of starting a business in Monaco, La Costa Properties currently has some superb Monaco businesses for sale. In order to secure the perfect commercial space to start your business in Monaco, it is paramount to get Monaco real estate expert advice and recommendations.

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