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What if you’re caught running an unregistered business in Cameroon?

unregistered business

The fine and consequences for carrying an economic activity with an unregistered business in Cameroon.

You need to complete a required number of procedures in order to legally operate a business in Cameroon. In the case of a sole proprietor business, partnership and limited companies, you need to register with the Trade and Personal Property Credit Register.

Sole proprietor businesses under XAF10,000,000 turnover are required to register with the local council where they operate. Freelancers need to obtain a Unique Identification Number (UIN) and make sure they pay the required income taxes.

If your business activity requires a business license, you will need to obtain it within 15 days following the start of operations.

Penalties for carrying unregistered businesses

In Cameroon, anyone who carries out an economic activity prior to registration is liable to a fine of XAF100,000 (one hundred thousand francs CFA) per month.

Carrying out an activity without a business license

Anyone operating an activity liable to a business license, who fails to pay shall be levied a penalty. The business shall be assessed for the entire year and an additional fine of between 50% to 100% maybe levied.

Not paying the business license on time

A fine is levied for not paying your business license within the prescribed time-limit. You will be fined between 10% to 30% of the business license tax due per month of lateness.

Carrying out an illegal or prohibited activity

Where the activity is illegal or prohibited, the defaulter shall pay an additional 100% of the normal business license tax. However, the business license tax will not be issued in such a case.

How can you run an unregistered business legally?

It is possible to operate an unregistered business in Cameroon, but you should be ready to bear the consequences and risks involved especially in the case where the business requires a business license. See business license tax exemption in Cameroon.

That notwithstanding, you can run an unregistered business so long as it is legal and you meet up with the tax requirements. You will have to obtain a Unique Identification Number (UIN) and make sure they pay the required income taxes.

You are required to register your business with the Trade and Personal Property Credit Register in order to obtain a business license.

You can get in touch now!

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This content has been prepared for information purposes only. It is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, accounting or legal advice. You need to consult your own tax, accounting or legal advisors before engaging in any transaction.


Openhub Digital - Company Incorporation in Cameroon
Kermann Lobga Derick
Kermann Lobga Derick
Content Writer / Blogger | Small Business Coach | Branding Expert | Entrepreneur| Dad Kermann Lobga is a copywriter, results-oriented digital marketing professional and an entrepreneur with more than 14 years of experience.

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