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Do you want to start your business in Belgium?

You may need a professional card

Starting your activity in Belgium as a foreign entrepreneur? This is a great idea!
However, before launching your activity, there are a few important administrative steps to tackle.
One such thing is the professional card. Discover more about it in this blog.

Posted on 24 October 2022 by Nancy Haesaert

Which foreign entrepreneurs do NOT need a professional card?

As a non-Belgian, the professional card gives you the permission to start a self-employed activity in Belgium. This enables you to fulfill the other administrative formalities via the Enterprise Counter as well.

There are exceptions such as:

  • Citizens of the EU, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Iceland. Also their family members  living at the same Belgian address
  • Certain refugees and people with specific residence permit, certain specific situations ...

Where should you do your application?

 Depending on the location of your company, find below the responsible department; 

  • Located in Flanders? Apply via the Flemish government or via our Entreprise Counter . 
  • Located in Brussels,  Wallonia or the German speaking Community  ? Apply via our Entreprise Counter.
  • Located in different regions? Apply for your professional card via the government of the region where your company’s official address is.
Contact us

How to apply in Flanders?

There are 4 steps to go through when you are requesting your professional card for the first time. 

Tip: Count on a minimum of 2 months to complete your request 

1. Activity

To be eligible for a professional card, your self-employed activity must have an economic or innovation added value or must be able to demonstrate a sporting, cultural or artistic added value. 

2. Necessary documents 

Be sure you have all the following documents

E.g. Copy of your foreign ID-Card or International Passport, copy of your Residence Permit, an Extract of the Criminal Record (max. 6 months old), Copy of your secondary education diploma, proof of income, financial plan, ...     

Tip: Find the official document

3. Translation 

Translate the documents by a sworn translator if necessary

4. Submission

Submit your application or have it submitted by an authorized representative (e.g. the Securex business counter).  If you submit your request via Securex, we will review your information and make sure that everything is complete. We will also take care of your application and will act as contact person towards the region.

Do you already have a valid residence in Belgium and is your company located in Flanders? Submit your request  to the Flemish authority.

You don’t have an official address in Belgium yet? Submit your application via the diplomatic or consular post of the country in which you are staying.

Your first professional card is valid for 2 to 3 years, depending on your self-employed activity.  After this period, you have to request a renewal.

The Securex-experts guide you:

  • We check whether all documents are correct
  • We complete where necessary
  • We help you to prepare the necessary supporting documentation.
  • We give you tips & tricks for your business plan
  • We introduce your application to the right authority
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Nancy Haesaert
Legal & Projet Coordinator

Nancy is a legal advisor and works with the self-employed and employers. She was before active within Securex in the Entreprise Counter, the Sociale Insurance Fund and the Social Secretariat.
She currently coordinates various projects and tenders, including individual guidance via “Zeker van je Zaak” co-financed by Vlaio - Vlaams Agentschap voor Innoveren & Ondernemen (Flemish Agency for Innovation & Entrepreneurship).
With the help of a coach “Zeker van je Zaak” you can, for example, draw up your own business plan & financial plan. 

Do you need help for your professional card?

Contact us