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Local business incentives - Legal forms of companies - Registration and licensing procedures - Legal framework - Foreign exchange control - Regulations concerning equity investment - FDI inflows - Expertise of the political risk

Local business incentives

An Agreement between France and Syria was signed in 1977. It aims at encouraging investments development between the two countries. Syrian authorities increasingly encourage the setting up of foreign investors, especially in the 7 free trade zones. Indeed, any industrial, commercial or service activity is exempt from customs duties (it includes imports and exports) for products re-exported outside Syria. However, as regards to products' marketing in Syria, the regime is restrictive in free trade zones.


Legal forms of companies

Form Number of partners/shareholders Minimum and/or maximum capital Liability Registration fee Release of financial documents
Private Limited Company Minimum 2. No minimum capital. e les pin
Public Limited Company. No minimum. S 30.000 Liability is limited to the amount contributed.
Limited Partnership. No minimum. No minimum capital. Liability is limited for some partners and unlimited for others.
Partnership Limited by shares. No minimum. No minimum capital. Liability is limited for some partners and unlimited for others.
General Partnership. Minimum 2. No minimum capital. Partners' liability is undefinite and joint.

Registration and licensing procedures
Companies have to deposit a registration request with the Ministry of Economy and Foreign Trade. The company will have to include a copy of the following documents:
-The Memorandum of Association signed by the Board of Directors President.

Foreign exchange control
Law n10 does not restrict foreign currencies imports by investors. However, the total imported currencies must be deposited into an account within the Commercial Bank of Syria, as well as 75% of exports incomes. The regime of capital repatriation is more flexible within the framework of law n10. Finally, foreign investors can transfer profits yearly.  

Foreign Direct Investment inflows in Syria

FDI inflows 2003 2004 2005 World rank (*)
FDI inflows (USD million) 180 275 500 101/141
Source : UNCTAD - World Investment Report
Note : (*) World Rank = UNCTAD Inward FDI Performance Index. It is a measure of the extend to which a host country receives inward FDI relative to its economic size. It is calculated as a ratio of the country's share in global FDI inflows to its share in global GDP.


Last modified in 2006 - ongoing update
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