The media and entertainment industry is playing a growing role in the Qatar economy. Large broadcasters like the beIN Media Group and Al Jazeera have had a large, long-term presence in the country, while the state continues to provide support for major broadcasting projects. And with Qatar successfully hosting last year’s FIFA World Cup, it’s safe to expect that the industry will improve even further this 2023.
These continued developments to the industry make it a lucrative decision to start a Qatar media company. In addition, other advantages to starting a business in Qatar within this sector include a high media (300 million households reached by major networks) and internet (99.0% reach in 2022) penetration, institutes like Northwestern University and the Al Jazeera Media Institute that mould media practitioners, and opportunities in the spaces of Qatar eSports or podcasting.
In this guide, we’ll dive into:
- How to start a Qatar media and entertainment company
- Where you can start a Qatar media and entertainment company
- How Creative Zone can help
How to start a Qatar media and entertainment company
First off, you’ll have to know the requirements for how to start a business in Qatar within the media and entertainment industry. Here are some documents that would be best to prepare. Take note that these should be written in Arabic, with a second copy in English.
- Commercial Residence with the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MOCI)
- Articles of Association or Memorandum of Association
- Proof of business center address (for mainland companies)
- Valid IDs of the company’s authorized representatives
From there, starting a business in Qatar involves liaising with several government offices. This can be time-consuming, so working with experts who can assist with company setup in Qatar will expedite the process and relieve you of worrying about what to prepare and who to speak to.
- Reserve a company name: Pick a business name that meets Qatar’s naming rules of not being offensive or related to politics and religion. Reserve the name with the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
- Draft a Memorandum of Association (MOA) or Articles of Association (AOA): These outline the important details of your Qatar media company. As such, it’s a crucial part of the process and is typically done alongside a legal advisor and business setup experts.
- Have the MOA or AOA attested: After the MOA/AOA is completed, it must be attested by the Ministry of Justice.
- Obtain your Commercial Residence: The Commercial Residence or CR is issued by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. This is necessary for your Qatar media company to open a corporate bank account, charge and accept payment from consumers, purchase assets under the business, and other activities.
- Apply for your trade license: Prepare all your requirements as listed above, and submit these to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry to obtain your trade license.
- Get your computer card: You’ll need to collect a copy of your CR, trade license, plus the IDs of all shareholders & individuals who need to be on the computer card, and submit this to immigration. A computer card is a document that states who can sign on behalf of your new Qatar media company.
Where you can start a Qatar media and entertainment company
Because the Qatar economy has been placing a significant focus on diversification, the nation has economic zones that cater to specific industries. For media and entertainment companies, you may want to explore the Qatar Media City (QMC). Established in 2019, the QMC is an emerging free zone that’s driving the growth of Qatar’s media industry. By leveraging on the local presence of major names like Al Jazeera, QMC aims to become an international hub for companies in communications, media, technology, or even research and development.
Choosing to set up your company at the QMC will give you benefits like foreign ownership, no corporate taxes (for renewable 20-year periods), zero personal income taxes, a variety of business structure options, and a streamlined formation process. Your Qatar media company will also have access to the country’s main entrepreneurial benefits, including its advanced infrastructure and state-of-the-art facilities, and talented professionals.
Besides the Qatar Media City are other mainland and free zone jurisdiction options for you to open your new company. These have their own pros and cons, which is why consulting with company formation experts who can guide you through these decisions is your best bet.
How Creative Zone can help
We have a 200-strong staff that speaks over 20 languages and has assisted clients globally. This team is proud to offer end-to-end business setup solutions, expert consultants for strategic insights, and support services ranging from visa assistance to concierge help.
These will offer you not only the perfect business solution for your new Qatar media company, but also the peace of mind that you’re following the right processes and aren’t missing out on anything important. Whether you only want a visa, help in getting a trade license, or complete support for business setup in Qatar, we can provide all of it and more. Get in touch with one of our consultants and let’s enter the emerging media and entertainment industry in Qatar.