start up concept

start up concept, © Colourbox


General information

Would you like to become self-employed in Germany?

This normally requires an economic or regional interest and positive influences of your business on the economic situation, e.g. in the form of new jobs. Moreover, the financial implemantation of your business plan has to be secured by your own means or a credit approval.

Foreigners who have successfully concluded their studies at a university or college in Germany or who work as researcher or scientist in Germany and already have a residence permit, can become self-employed if the business is related to their field of study/research. 

A residence permit for self-employment can be issued for

  • company founders
  • single entrepreneurs und
  • managing directors and legal representatives of partnership businesses and corporations if they bear entrepreneurial responsibility

Prepare your application

You should start preparing your application as soon as you have plans for your long-term stay in Germany. Prepare your application according to the following list and submit the documents with 2 copies when applying for a visa:

  • copy of valid passport (including all pages that are not blank)
  • a completed and personally signed national visa application form (please use the online application form VIDEX)
  • Declarations according to § 54 (2) no. 8 in conjunction with § 53 of the German Residence Act, duly signed
  • 3 recent biometric passport photos (not older than 3 months)
  • Saudi ID or Iqama or Saudi Arabian visa & entry stamp
  • motivation letter with details about the intended stay in Germany
  • proof of sufficient financial means to finance the stay in Germany
  • detailed CV including educational and professional experience, including letters of experience etc.
  • proof of qualification: diplomas/degrees, reference/sponsor letters
  • if applicable: proof of German/English language knowledge 
  • comprehensive company profile, including:
    • company profile
    • business plan
    • business concept
    • capital requirement plan
    • financing plan
    • marketing strategy
    • revenue forecast
    • details about the number of jobs to be created and, if applicable, training positions
    • if applicable, details about research and innovation within the company
  • visa fee of 75€, to be paid in SAR (cash only)
  • if you are older than 45 years: adequate pension scheme
  • insurance offer for private pension scheme or life insurance,
  • own funds,
  • pension expectancies or
  • business assets

Before the visa can be issued, the German Mission will request a valid health insurance for Germany.

All documents are to be presented in original or certified copy along with two sets of copies.

Foreign documents issued in other languages than English or German have to be submitted with an official translation.

The German Missions reserve the right to request additional documents.

Important notes on the visa procedure

Please do not send unrequested documents to the German Mission, especially not before applying for the visa, as those cannot be kept. Please submit all documents when applying in person at the Mission. Incomplete applications will be rejected or denied.

Foreign public documents need to be duly legalized by the competent German Mission in the issuing country, or, if applicable, provided with an Apostille. For documents from some countries, individual document verification might be necessary, that process would require more time and an additional fee.


The processing of the visa application for self-employment usually takes one month, sometimes longer.

The German Mission decides on your application based on the provided documents. You will be contacted as soon as the application has been decided. Please note that questions regarding the status of your visa application cannot be answered. Due to data protection regulation, no status updates can be given via phone.

Book your appointment

To submit your application, please book an appointment and appear in person at the mission. The German Mission will accept your complete application documents including the visa fee, will conduct a short interview with you and register your biometric data.

Applicants with residence in the provinces of Qasim, al-Mintaqa al-Sharqiya (Eastern Province), Hail, al-Hudud al-Shamaliya (Northern Province), Jouf and Riyadh are kindly requested to book an appointment through the online appointment system of the Embassy in Riyadh

Applicants with residence in the provinces of Tabuk, Medina, Mekka, Baha, Asir, Najran and Jazan are kindly requested to book an appointment through the online system of the Consulate General in Jeddah.

Additional Information

Latest information of the Federal Ministry for the Interior, Building and Community concerning work migration.

If you have any additional question that has not been answered in this article, you can write an email to work@riad.diplo.de oder info@djidda.diplo.de . Please refrain from asking questions that are explained on this website.


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