Setting up a business as a foreigner: the professional card

Last modified:

Monday 31 August 2020

If you would like to exercise an independent activity in Belgium but you are not a national of a European member state, nor of Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland, then you will need a "professional card" .

The application is to be made out :

  • to the approved Business Counter (FR) of your choice if you already reside in Belgium and are in possession of a valid identity card for foreigners, proof of registration in the register of foreign nationals, and a certificate of registration model A; (but first check with the Business Counter whether you are eligible for exemption from the requirement to hold a professional card)
  • or with the Belgian consular or diplomatic authority in your country of residence if you reside outside of Belgium.  

At the time of the request for issue, modification, renewal, or replacement of the professional card, the applicant pays a fee of €140.

As soon as the card can be issued, Brussels Economy and Employment informs the applicant that the professional card can be collected from the Business Counter designated beforehand.  The Business Counter checks the identity of the applicant and receives the amount for the issue of the card: namely, €90 per year for which the card is issued. 

To obtain more comprehensive information on the professional card, visit the website of Brussels Economy and Employment

More generally, in terms of access formalities to the territory and the exercise of an economic activity by a foreign national, you can check the site that has an " expat welcome desk".

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