Starting your own company

The City of Antwerp offers you customised advice on your business. Here you’ll find an overview of all the business support services that the city offers for starters.

Opening a hospitality business

If you’re looking to open a hotel, restaurant or catering business in Antwerp, then you’ll need to apply for some permits from the city. In addition to these formalities there are other obligations that you need to fulfil, such as meting food safety requirements. The Business Desk gives you customised advice.

Pop-up shop

Each pop-up shop is unique. The conditions and requirements for starting this kind of temporary sales point are quite different from the general conditions for opening up a permanent shop. The Business Desk gives you customised advice for pop-up shops, ensuring that you are fully aware of the legal requirements for your specific situation.

Applying for an environmental permit

If you want to start a business that might entail a nuisance to people or the environment, you’ll need an environmental licence. The type of licence depends on the nature of the potential nuisance.

Environmental licence classes 1, 2 and 3

Do you want to start a business in Antwerp? Then you’ll need to find out whether you need an environmental licence. The conditions for the various types of licence are specified in VLAREM, the Flemish Environmental Licence Regulations.

Depending on the type of nuisance your business causes, you’ll need one of the following licences:

  • Class 1: activity causing most nuisance
  • Class 2: activity causing less nuisance
  • Class 3: activity causing least nuisance

Asking for a company ID number

To start your own business, you will need a company ID number. You can ask for this through any number of enterprise agencies in the city. Once you have signed up, you will get your number which:

  • Is a 10-digit number
  • Is the same as your VAT number but with a 0 at the beginning of it

Be sure to use this number in your emails, letters, invoices, receipts and other communications.

Contact us

For all your questions on how to start your new investment:

Invest Desk
Desk: Francis Wellesplein 1 - 2018 Antwerpen
Postal address: Grote Markt 1 - 2000 Antwerpen

Tel: +32 (0) 3 338 65 20


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