New business licensing  regulations for Lesotho

New business licensing regulations for Lesotho

MASERU-TRADE Minister Thabiso Molapo has issued a new set of licensing regulations that will bar foreigners from running certain businesses in Lesotho.

The Business Licensing and Registration Regulations 2020 come after the Movement for Economic Change (MEC) deputy leader, Tšepang Tšita-Mosena, filed a motion in Parliament earlier this year.
Tšita-Mosena told thepost that some Basotho businessmen were being nudged out of business by foreigners who had invested in small businesses around the country.

“The regulations were triggered by a realisation that the majority of businesses are owned by foreigners,” Tšita-Mosena said.
The new regulations bar foreigners from owning and operating businesses such as international road freight and logistics, road transport and logistics, and motor dealership.

They also prohibit foreigners from owning real estate agencies, clearing agencies, warehouse activities, retail sale of household fuel such as paraffin, bottled gas and coal.
Foreigners are also barred from owning fast food businesses without operating full restaurant services, hairdressing and beauty treatment salons.

The new rules also say foreigners cannot own repair and maintenance of motor vehicles and motor cycle businesses.
They are also not allowed to own businesses to clean cars, raising of livestock or sale of livestock or their products.
Foreigners cannot also be tour operators under these new rules.
They cannot own any cleaning company, landscape care and maintenance services.

Foreigners are also not allowed to own any photographic businesses.
They cannot run businesses via stalls and market of food, beverages and tobacco products.
They cannot sell any textiles, clothing or footwear via stalls.
Foreigners, under the new rules, are not allowed to be business agents or brokers in any specialised stores, including wholesale and retail sale of health-related articles or products.

They cannot sell animal feeds, including animal and crops medical goods and chemicals.
They are also not allowed to sell bread and confectionary products.
The rules say they cannot sell motor parts and accessories.
They also blocked from owning motor vehicle repair businesses which includes the sale of vehicle tyres, parts and motor-cycle parts.

Foreigners are also not allowed to sell alcoholic beverages whether or not consumed on the spot or not, meaning they cannot own off-sales, taverns, shebeens and public bars.
They are not allowed to own wholesale and retail sale of meat and meat products, fruits and vegetables.

The rules say foreigners cannot sell prepared meat and meat dishes whether consumed on the spot without operating full restaurant services.
They are barred from supplying liquefied petroleum gas and petroleum products.

Foreigners, according to the new rules, are also forbidden from running retail sale of hardware, paints and glass products, pharmaceutical and medical goods, cosmetics and toilet articles in specialized stores, including wholesale and retail sale of health-related articles or products.
Mobile food services and other food services are not for foreigners in Lesotho.

Also printing and business support services such as photocopying, document preparation and other specialised office support services have also been banned.
The rules say foreigners cannot engage in electrical, plumbing and other construction installation activities.
They are not allowed to be welders or own metal waste or scraps.
Foreigners are not allowed to engage in repair of footwear and clothing.

Nkheli Liphoto

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