Jordan - Faster and Easier Business Licensing

The new Licensing Section of the municipal office of Madaba, Jordan.
The new Licensing Section of the municipal office of Madaba, Jordan.
Bill Lyons
A New Customer Service Unit Speeds Up Licensing for Businesses
“The value of this project goes beyond the simple convenience and new ease experienced when registering for or renewing a business license,” said Ahmad Al-Gazwi, Madaba’s mayor.

Challenge

Registering or renewing a business license in Jordan was once an arduous task. The registration system required lengthy procedures for both local governments and businesses. The time required for a new business license to be processed and issued could add up to 96 days, while a license renewal ranged from 17 to 40 days. It was also expensive — the cost of registering or renewing a license could add up to $420 dollars annually. In addition, the logistics were complicated; in order obtain the necessary signatures, an applicant had to make between six and 14 visits to various offices and authorities.

Initiative

Working with USAID, local software and business consulting firms partnered with Jordan’s Ministry of Municipalities to create a pilot program to streamline the licensing process. The municipality of Greater Madaba, about 15 miles southwest of Amman, was the idea location for the program because of the diversity of businesses based there. The project set up a Customer Service Unit to facilitate and speed up license processing; designed standard forms and applications to bring uniformity to the process; and put in place an automated system that guided applicants through the application and renewal process.

Results

Entrepreneurs and established business owners can now process their applications with ease through the new Customer Service Unit, enjoying the speed and convenience of simplified processes and the automated system. It takes an average of one to two days to issue a new business license. If the business needs a security check, licensing can take up to three weeks. Renewals are issued on the same day, eliminating unnecessary delays and hassles. Simplifying the licensing process has made it is easier for companies of all sizes to do business in Jordan.

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Last updated: October 30, 2013

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