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In our FAQ section, we provide answers to the questions most commonly asked by investors interested in Germany. Topics range from financing and company forms to visas and health insurance. And if you have further questions, feel free to contact us!
Are there any restrictions on foreign investments in Germany?
There are generally no restrictions or extra requirements put on foreign investors planning to establish a business in Germany.The same legal conditions apply for foreign and local entrepreneurs. Germany favors freedom of foreign trade and payments, as laid down in the Foreign Trade and Payments Act (AWG). For more information, pleasse visit:
How can Germany Trade & Invest support my investment project?
Foreign enterprises planning to establish their business operations in Germany can obtain information on the business environment, such as the corporate investment framework, tax regulations, and subsidies. Our range of services includes strategic planning, market research, and competitive analysis; whereas we do not provide target lists of companies that are looking for strategic business partners or financial investors. Our industry experts offer comprehensive project management and support services from site selection to the final realization of the investment. All inquiries are kept confidential and our investment services are free of charge.
Do I need a special visa to handle the formation of my new company?
For most activities in the formation phase of your business, a Schengen Travel Visa (in this context often referred to as a "Business Visa") is sufficient. It enables the holder to stay in Germany for up to 3 months per half year. EU citizens do not require a visa. If you are planning to stay in Germany for a longer period of time, or if you plan to start working within 3 months, then a different type of visa will be required.
What form of company will best fit my needs?
Foreign investors can select from a variety of legal forms for conducting business in Germany. There are certain criteria which are decisive for choosing the most suitable legal form for your planned business activities. We provide a detailed description of German company forms. More details on this subject here:
How can I finance my investment project?
Investors can choose between different forms of equity and debt. A combination of such instruments is usually recommendable, depending on the investment project. Financial institutions such as banks, private equity companies, and venture capital firms offer these instruments to finance investment projects.
What is a "housebank"? Why do I need one?
The concept of a "housebank" is unique to Germany. It arose from the long-standing tradition of German companies establishing an exclusive relationship with a single bank. The "housebank" manages all day-to-day financial activities and serves as the company’s main partner in financing an investment project. When a company applies for public funding, authorities usually require one bank, the "housebank," to confirm the total financing of the investment project.
Is my investment project eligible to receive public funding?
Public funding programs are generally open to any entrepreneur with a registered business in Germany. An investor's country of origin is irrelevant when it comes to determining a project's eligibility for public funding. Decisive criteria are the size of the parent company, the location of the planned investment, and the scope of the investment project. There is a broad variety of funding programs available that can either take effect during the investment process or after the investment has been settled.
Which aspects of my project are eligible for funding?
There is a broad variety of funding programs available that can either take effect during the investment process or after the investment has been settled. For example, a certain percentage of investment costs can be refunded through cash incentives. In addition, some of the company’s operating costs can be reimbursed through labor-related incentives. There is also a broad range of R&D incentives available to support various types of R&D projects. In addition, reduced interest loans and public guarantees are offered.
Where can I find qualified employees?
Employers can contact the Federal Employment Agency, which operates more than 800 job centers throughout the country. They offer comprehensive recruitment support, from pre-selecting applicants to managing assessment centers. All services are free of charge.
Can I get health insurance in Germany? How does it work?
Yes, the German health system is open to foreigners. Its health service is held in high regard worldwide, as it ensures excellent medical care for all citizens. People who are self-employed in Germany generally need to get private insurance.
Where can I get information about potential business partners in Germany?
The German business portal iXPOS connects entrepreneurs of all industries seeking new business partners. Industry associations can obtain detailed information on various sectors of German industry. They provide in-depth industry insight and relevant data and statistics, and they generally have good contact to political and economic decision-makers.
Where can I find information on the top industries in Germany?
Germany provides business opportunities in a number of industries. Please visit the following link to find out more about recent developments, market potentials, the latest trends, downloads and statistics on the most important industries: