Trade licences in 25 days from CMC
The Colombo Municipal Council (CMC) has introduced a new and
efficient module for businesses to obtain a licence to operate and
trade. If the criteria are met, the licence will be issued in 25 days.
The licence ensures compliance in overall hygiene facilities, site
plan as well as fire regulations in order to operate in a particular
neighbourhood or within a community. Licences are issued by CMC to 148
different business categories, the majority being catering
establishments and restaurants, barber and hairdressing salons, car
repair shops and garages, LP gas stores, tailoring establishments and
manufacturing facilities etc.
CMC’s biggest concern is the lack of awareness among the business and
trading sector of the mandatory requirement of a licence to trade.
Applicants are unaware of the process, requirements and timelines which
results in obtaining such a licence being a tedious and cumbersome
The new simplified module will significantly reduce redundant
processes to avoid unnecessary delays, reduce workload of departmental
heads and ensure faster processing of applications.
A handbook explaining the required criteria along with a checklist
will ensure that both applicant and the Municipal inspectors are
knowledgeable on the requirements. This too will avoid unnecessary
delays in the process.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, assisted Colombo Municipal
Council to create efficiencies for obtaining trade licences by
simplifying the issuance process for businesses. The new business
licensing system is a progressive measure to help Colombo improve the
investment climate and achieve its full growth potential.