General Questions
Where is the SCZone located?
Located in Egypt, the SCZone covers an area of 461 km2 along the banks of the Suez Canal, linking the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea, the most important trade route between Europe and Asia. The SCZone comprises four development areas and six ports.
Who is in charge of the SCZone?
The General Authority of the Suez Canal Economic Zone is in charge of management and development. As for decision-making and regulatory powers, the board of directors has the authority of the Egyptian cabinet of ministers within the SCZone.
Can companies be 100% foreign owned?
Yes, as long as they are registered and licensed as Egyptian joint stock companies.
Can a representative office be established in the SCZone?
Yes, as long as it is an office for promotion or research only. However, if the office intends to engage in trade it must be licensed as an Egyptian joint stock company.
What is the minimum capital requirement for investment in the SCZone?
There is no minimum capital requirement, but investors must show evidence of funding and a sound business plan to obtain a license to operate within the zone.
Is the land in the zone for sale or lease?
It is for lease and grants usufruct rights for up to 50 years, renewable.
What is the lease price?
Lease price differs according to location within different development areas.
What are the minimum and maximum sizes of plots available for lease?
There are no set limits on plot size. Depending on the nature of the investment, a suitable plot will be proposed in accordance with needs. Large areas are typically provided to industrial developers. For small areas, investors may lease from industrial developers currently operating within the zone.
Are all development areas equipped with infrastructure and utilities?
Because of its size, some parts of the SCZone are better equipped than others. Many industrial developers offer complete infrastructure and utilities within their designated areas.
What is the process for registering and licensing a business?
First, an application must be submitted to the General Authority, then the company’s paperwork will be reviewed by the board of directors. Once approved, land and building permits will be issued. The process is facilitated by the SCZone’s Investor Services Department and if paperwork is in order, will be completed in three days.
What is the cost of obtaining a license?
Fees vary according to the type of license requested. Detailed fee information is available from the Investors Services Department upon request.
Is an environmental impact assessment needed?
Yes, an environmental impact assessment is needed, and it is reviewed by the SCZone General Authority, not the Egyptian government.
What is the law regulating investment within the SCZone?
The SCZone is regulated by the Egyptian Law for Economic Zones of a Special Nature: Law No. 83 for 2002 and its amendment of 2015.
What are the customs duties on imports to the SCZone?
What are the customs duties on exports to Egypt from the SCZone?
Customs are imposed on the value of the imported components only, not on the value of the final product.
Are goods produced within the zone given an Egyptian Country of Origin Certificate?
Yes, which gives these goods preferential access to all countries with which Egypt has free trade agreements, an aggregate market of 1.8 billion consumers.
What is the corporate tax rate for doing businesses in the SCZone?
The corporate tax rate is 22.5%.
Can profits be repatriated?
There are no restrictions on financial transactions in any currency within the SCZone and 100% of profits can be repatriated.
Are there restrictions on the employment of foreign labor?
The percentage of foreign employees working for a company in the SCZone may not exceed 10%. In some cases an exception will be considered by the board of directors.