On 20 July 2023, the Bill of Law 7989 amending the Law of 2 September 2011 regulating the access to the professions of craftsman, merchant, manufacturer and certain liberal professions, as amended (the "Law"), was adopted by the Parliament.
The amendments will enter into force on 1 September 2023.

The major modifications are:

I. Additional activities being subject to a business licence

  • The definition of accommodation establishment operator is amended to include short-term rentals and includes any person renting out accommodation units for a cumulative 90 nights or more in the course of one year. The new criterion of 90 nights is used to distinguish the operator of an accommodation establishment, which is to be regarded as a business and therefore subject to establishment business licence, from those who occasionally rent out such units without it becoming a commercial activity. To determine whether a person meets the threshold of 90 nights, the number of nights of any accommodation units rented by a person have to be taken into account.

New activities:

  • a real estate business introducer ("apporteur d'affaires immobilier"). This is an intermediary who puts a property developer or agent in contact with potential buyers or tenants of a property;
  • the activity of selling motor vehicles, requiring a business licence for "commercial activity and services relating to the sale of vehicles" ("autorisation d'établissement pour activité et services commerciaux de vente de véhicules").
  • the activity of renting out shared offices or workspace ("co-working"), requiring a business licence for "commercial activities and services relating to the rental of shared work space or offices with ancillary services" ("autorisation d'établissement pour activité et services commerciaux de location d'espace de travail partagé ou bureaux avec services auxiliaires").
  • the sale of food products, requiring a business licence for "commercial activity and services relating to the trade in foodstuffs" ("autorisation d'établissement pour activité et services commerciaux de commerce alimentaire").
  • commercial services of high-value movable goods, requiring a business licence for "commercial activities and services relating to high value movable goods" ("autorisation d'établissement pour activité et services commerciaux de biens meubles de grande valeur"). This business licence concerns the negotiation of purchases or sales and the activity of depositary of works of art, precious metals or precious stones, as well as the sale of jewellery, watches or other goods, where the value of the transaction(s) is equal to or higher than €10,000.

These persons must comply with the provisions within a two-year transitional period starting 1 September 2023. This means that businesses falling within the scope of these activities will have to apply for a new business licence, even if they already hold one based on the former law.

II. Real link with the company

  • Article 4 of the Law relating to the real link with the company is amended to include company management. According to the current wording, the real link between an executive ("dirigeant") and a company exists when the executive is the owner, partner, shareholder or employee of the company. The Law requires that the executive must be registered as the company's representative in the Luxembourg Trade and Companies Register if the business is a commercial company.

III. Limitation of the amount of business licences that a person can hold

  • A person may not be the manager of more than two unrelated artisanal businesses practising professions covered by lists A and B. The aim of this measure is to limit the number of intermediaries for these regulated professions. For the professions on list C, as defined below, there is no such limit.

IV. Formalised conditions to allow a person previously involved in a bankruptcy to obtain a new business licence

  • The amended Law introduces the principle of a 'new chance', which is granted to a person who was previously involved in a bankruptcy, if this bankruptcy is due to one of the reasons listed in the Law.

V. Access to some artisanal activities is made simpler

A new list of artisanal activities ("List C") exists. Business licence holders managing activities falling within this category (e.g. taxi services, etc.) will no longer be required to have specific qualifications to obtain a business licence and exercise their activity.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.