top of page

Doing business on Saba

To operate a business on Saba, persons are required to have a business establishment license based on the business establishment law.

This applies to any type of business and any form of doing business.

The various forms of businesses that are possible are:

  1. The sole proprietary (eenmanszaak)

  2. The limited partnership (commanditaire vennootschap)

  3. The limited liability company (besloten vennootschap)

  4. The public limited liability company (naamloze vennootschap)

The first two business forms are personally connected to those involved.

The sole proprietary will use your personal crib number, etc. and there is no distinction from a legal perspective between your personal and business assets. The same goes for the limited partnership.


The last two are separate legal entities, the besloten, and naamloze vennootschap. This distinction has various consequences. The limited liability companies need to be legally established by a notary deed for example. The sole proprietary does not.


Anyone can start a sole proprietary business by just registering at the chamber of commerce and industry of Saba and Sint Eustatius, the tax department, and by requesting a business establishment license from the Public Entity Saba and any other operational licenses that you might need.

To get a complete overview of the legal advantages and disadvantages of which business form to choose from that best matches your business ambitions, we advise seeking legal advice from an attorney specializing in this matter or the legal desk Saba.


After you know what legal form your business will be you will need to know what licenses you need to operate.


General business establishment license

All businesses on Saba require a business establishment license to be able to run a business.

This applies to any and all forms of doing business. From a restaurant or a bar to a dive shop or a supermarket.

Application for a business establishment license from the Public Entity Saba can be done by completing the application form.

You must include your business plan, which includes a description of your business and your financial plan to back it up.

Depending on what type of business, further questions or conditions can apply.


Operational licenses

Next to the general business establishment license, for most businesses, a specific operational license is needed.

Examples are that a fishing business will also need to have a fishing license and hotels, bars and restaurants need an operational license from the governor to open to the public.

These operational licenses are very industry-specific, and each have different processes and requirements. For a restaurant license, for example, you will need to complete an operational license request form and will have to undergo various inspections from the public health and fire department, before being able to open to the public. A background check can also be part of the procedure.

bottom of page