Self-employed work by foreign nationals

With its central location in the heart of Western Europe and its excellent transport links, the city of Bonn and its surrounding area provide ideal conditions for foreign nationals to work on a self-employed basis or for companies from abroad to set up dependent or independent branches.

According to §1 section 1 of the law in Germany concerning trade, commerce and industry regulations (GewO), anyone is in principle allowed to run a business as long as exceptions or restrictions (for example the crafts code) are not stipulated by law. This mostly unrestricted right of access to running a business also applies to foreign nationals and companies from abroad.

There are restrictions set down in the law which concern foreign nationals who do not originate from an EU or an EEA (European Economic Area) country. This law was liberalised by the new immigration law, which came into effect on 1st January 2005.

Additional requirements for non-EU citizens or companies from third countries:

- a (temporary) residence permit or
- a (permanent) settlement permit

A residence permit can be granted for business start-ups in accordance with Section 21 of the Residence Act (Aufenthaltsgesetz) if, among other things

- there is an overriding economic interest or a special regional need
- the activity is expected to have a positive impact on the economy and
- the financing of the realisation is secured by equity capital or a loan commitment.

Please find more information here