Checklist: How to set up a business in Curaçao.

Curaçao is a top choice among companies that want to grow their business across the Pan-American region.  It is an excellent place to establish a new business, for various reasons. To get you started, here is a quick checklist of things you should consider and get into place.


When you have these basics in place, there are several other factors to think about. Here are some of the most important:

  • Finance & Taxes.  TIP: some legal firms also provide accounting services and tax support. It is convenient to select a firm that integrates all these services for a fixed annual fee.
  • Employment Law.  Contact the Department of Social Development, Labor and Welfare in order to follow the proper rules and regulations for employing local and/or foreign labor.
  • Immigration Requirements.  Foreign nationals must apply for a residence permit, unless they receive ‘admission by right’ (e.g. Dutch citizens), or qualify as a tourist, in which case they are not allowed to work.
  • Intellectual Property.  Whether you choose to only trade or also produce in Curaçao, you must take into account local laws, as well as international treaties, as they apply to such things as trademarks, brands, patents, data protection, trade secrets and more.
  • Customs, Shipping and Handling.  The Curaçao Customs Authority has offices both in the seaport and at the airport. Still, employing a local handling agent is a good idea, both for their internal contacts at Customs, as well as for quick logistic handling of your shipments.