How to start a business in Sri Lanka

How to start a business in Sri Lanka

Starting a business in Sri Lanka is a great opportunity. The economy of Sri Lanka is steadily increasing overtimes with GDP growth of 8 percent. After the end of the thirty-year conflict, now Sri Lanka is heading out to the age of success and development.  Many foreigners now attracted to set up business in Sri Lanka.

However, for starting a business in Sri Lanka, you need to come up with some strategy and plan. Besides you also need to have a clear idea of the company registration procedure. This article is going to describe things that you need to overcome to establish a business in Sri Lanka.

The procedure of setting up a business in Sri Lanka is straight forward. The whole procedure takes about 10 days.

Company Name Registration

Through the Registrar of Companies online site, you need to register your company name. The registration of the company name will valid for three months. Company name registration will cost 1000 Sri Lankan rupees (LKR). If everything is alright, the name registration will be cleared within two days.

Directors and Secretary Signing

Next, the organization secretary and director must sign with “Register of Companies.” This is done face to face and takes a day. However, the directors can appoint the secretary upon terms and conditions. If you don’t have a secretary, there are many consulting firms who can serve you, secretary. They will charge around 30000 to 45000 LKR per month for this service.

Public Notice & Company structure

Submit your company structures through the Registrar of Companies.  Publish a public notice of your company registration information at Daily Newspapers and Government Publication Bureau. Publish this notice within 60 days from business registration. The Daily Newspaper company will take around two weeks to publish the notice.  It will cost LKR 7,000.

Tax Identification Number

Obtain a Tax Identification Number (TIN) from the Taxpayer Services Unit of the Inland Revenue Department. No charge is applied for this work. Takes about 1 days to complete this work.  This must be done face to face.

How to Start A Business in Sri Lanka As Lawful or Legal Issue?

According to Sri Lankas labor law, an employee is permitted to take 14 days annual paid leave after one-year continuous work. Every company needs to provide one and half day of weekly holiday. The private Limited Company does not have any pension scheme for their employee. However, if you are working for five years in a company, the company is bound to pay gratitude.

Wages in Sri Lanka

According to the labor law, the minimum monthly wages for a worker in any industry or business will be SLR 10000. The minimum salary of the employee or worker will be SLR 400.

The employer needs to pay the minimum wage, if not they will be subjected to punishment. As a punishment, even the employer business license can be canceled. The table below shows the wages rates of different industry.

Industry Category Minimum Wages in SLR
Service Sectors Skilled people 7500-9500 per month
  Semi-Skilled people 7500-8000 per month
  Non-Skilled 6500-7500 per month
Industrial Skilled 7500-9500 per month
  Semi-Skilled 7000-8000 per month
  Skilled 6500-7500 per month
Plantation - 350 per day
  Attendance bonus 100-105 per day
  inceptive 30 per day

Remote Employment

The level of remote workers for a specific outside business in Sri Lanka is reliant on the nature and estimation of venture. Once the organization is endorsed under the Board of Investment in Sri Lanka, the speculator can look for authorization on these respects from the Investment Appraisal Department of the BOI. The Board of Investment in Sri Lanka is the key leader in such manner.

Office Rent

As of August 2016, rental expense for office premises in Colombo 1-3 is around 250 Sri Lankan rupees for per square foot (every month). Be that as it may, these expenses are liable to foundation and different offices that are given in the workplace. In this manner, the costs may differ.

Read Also: Office space for rent in Colombo, Sri Lanka - Desk Rent

Dividend Tax

Currently the dividend tax is payable at 14 percent which was 10 percent (adjusted from 1 April 2018). 14 percent of distributable profit should be distributed as dividends within 18 months from the commencement of the year of assessment.


Starting a business in Sri Lanka could be profitable if you have the right business plan and strategy. Business registration procedure in Sri Lanka is straight forward and hassle free. The government of Sri Lanka is providing many opportunities to attract more foreign direct investment.

However, if you are a foreigner, you may not know how the company registration process works. Therefore, to know about the complete company registration process contact – S & F Consulting Firm. Well, now you can know about the Indian rupee conversion rate to Sri Lankan rupees.


Company Registration Expert Since 2012