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Kingdom of Bahrain

Bahrain Allows 99% foreign ownership for Trade Sector

Bahrain Allows 99% foreign ownership for Trade Sector

Previously, a 51% Bahraini ownership was required to set up a trade business in Bahrain. It was a big hurdle for foreign investors to find a feasible Bahraini shareholder for the trade business. Before today, the requirement of trade business was stated as follows:
“Foreign Ownership: Allowed up to 49%”

On 25-09-2021 Ministry of Industry & Commerce silently changed the foreign ownership rules for trade-related businesses. Now the only requirement is to have a Bahraini partner regardless of ownership percentage. Now, in sijilat system it states the requirement as follows:

“Foreign ownership allowed, but must include a Bahraini shareholder : Yes”

However, 100% ownership is still allowed for the Services and Manufacturing Sector. 

This is a great step by the Kingdom, in efforts to increase foreign investment. This policy has a positive impact on the “Ease of Doing Business” in Bahrain.  Foreign shareholders can easily find a 1% shareholder to setup a business in Bahrain without any insecurity.


  • Age : 18 and above

  • Bahraini Ownership : Allowed up to 100%

  • GCC Nationals Ownership : Allowed up to 100%

  • American Nationals Ownership : Allowed up to 100%

  • Foreign Ownership Allowed, But Must Include a Bahraini Shareholder : Yes

  • Allowed for Individual Commercial Registration (ICR) : Yes

  • Allowed for Compnay Commercial Registration (CCR) : Yes