Professional Cards

Find out about the requirements for applying for a professional card as a self-employed worker in Belgium...

Foreigners who are citizens of an EU member state or of Norway, Iceland or Lichtenstein can set up as self-employed in Belgium without restriction. Non-EU nationals must apply for a professional card (beroepskaart/carte professionelle) at the Belgian embassy or consulate in their home country, or, if they are already in Belgium, at the municipality where they live.

The following documents are needed for the application:

  • A completed registration form
  • A photocopy of the passport or residence permit
  • A medical certificate
  • A certificate of good conduct from the last country of residence (or an equivalent document recognised by the Belgian authorities)
  • A CV

Applications are sent to the Federal Public Service for the Economy:

  • At: WTC III, Boulevard Simon Bolivar 30, 1000 Brussels
    Tel: 02 277 74 01
    Fax: 02 277 53 66

The Federal Public Service for the Economy then investigates the application. If it is approved, the municipality issues a professional card with an exact description of the authorised activity. This card may be valid for up to five years.

In addition to nationals of a Member State of the European Economic Area, this formality is waived for certain other people, such as asylum seekers and nationals of countries which have a special relationship with Belgium under a treaty. The countries that currently have such a special relationship are Bulgaria and Romania. However, nationals of these countries require a permit to be able to conduct a self-employed business. The permit must be applied for from the Federal Public Department for the Economy.

Prepared using information supplied by ING Bank SA/NV