Opening A Branch

Any business legally established in a European country may open a secondary establishment, such as an office, agency, Branch or Subsidiary, in another EU member state.

A Branch office is a smaller division of a main, or parent, company with offices in a separate location, and is a popular business format for low risk projects. Branches are mainly used to conduct administrative business internationally. The branch office has the same obligations as the parent company with regard to VAT returns etc., but the parent is fully accountable for all branch liabilities.

A foreign branch is considered as an extension of the parent, not as a separate entity, and so legal existence of the parent must be presented before branch registration in the chosen country.

In addition branches must register with the tax and VAT authorities, the companies’ register, and the social security office and publish information on the activities of the parent company. Other necessary qualifications, authorisations and tax requirements are dependent on the country. 

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