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Granting of Business Licenses (FOI)

Granting of Business Licenses (FOI)

Produced by the Freedom of Information office
Authored by Government of Jersey and published on 28 May 2021.
Prepared internally, no external costs.


I’d like to ask some questions on the business licensing scheme.


Are there any figures to prove what benefit the scheme is to Jersey over the cost of administration.


Do the fees cover the cost of administration?


How many staff hours are taken to administer the scheme?


How many full and part time staff are employed to administer the scheme?


How many licences per year have been paid for since it’s inception?


What amount of money has been paid for licence fees by visiting traders per year since its inception?


Can you break down where the traders came from?


Can you identify what area or industry the licences were for?


Is the scheme seen in anyway as a barrier to business in Jersey?


Do Jersey residents lodge complaints about the licensing scheme creating a culture of protectionism for local traders where visiting traders can’t compete?


There is not a business licensing scheme operating in Jersey. The Control of Housing and Work (Jersey) Law 2012 (CHWL) sets out the criteria for granting or varying a business license or permissions to employ staff members who do not hold entitled or entitled for work status.

The purpose of the CHWL is to preserve and maximise the benefits of the islands resources and to control the overall population density of Jersey and the availability of work and housing for people with strong connections or associations with Jersey. The purpose of the CHWL is not assessed against the cost of administering the law. By restricting access to housing and employment the benefits of CHWL are that the use of the island's limited resources is maintained and maximised and that the net inward migration rate and the overall population of the island is controlled.


The administration of part seven of the CHWL, Controls on Working, is undertaken (along with other duties) by the Business Hub which is part of Customer and Local Services (CLS). The fees charged for business licences and staffing permissions cover the operating costs of the Business Hub.

The number of staff hours taken solely to administer part seven of the CHWL are not recorded.

The administration of part seven of the CHWL, Controls on Working, is undertaken (along with other duties) by the Business Hub which has a permanent headcount of 14 full time employees.

New resident undertaking licenses do not carry a charge. Annual fees are payable for staffing permissions under the Control of Housing and Work (Fees) (Jersey) Order 2013 which specifies the fees payable. This fee only applied to licensed permissions until 2017 when the legislation was amended introducing a fee for registered permissions.


Number of permissions charged broken down by year

2020: 2325 licensed permissions / 6571 registered permissions

2019: 2238 licensed permissions / 6176 registered permissions

2018: 2043 licensed permissions / 6458 registered permissions

2017: 2063 licensed permissions / 7352 registered permissions

2016: 1844 licensed permissions

2015: 1726 licensed permissions

2014: 1517 licensed permissions

Number of non-resident undertaking licenses issued by year and fees paid

2020: 95 £117,250

2019: 143 £184,750

2018: 249 £294,000

2017: 315 £262,000

2016: 226 £244,000

2015: 209 £120,500

2014: 195 £120,500

2013: 79 £47,500

Number of non-resident undertaking licenses issued broken down by country of origin


​92 UK

1 Portugal

1 France

1 Guernsey


​133 UK

2 Spain

2 France

2 Ireland

3 Guernsey

1 Germany


​231 UK

3 France

8 Guernsey

2 Germany

2 Italy

3 Portugal


​282 UK

1 Spain

1 New Zealand

2 Germany

2 Italy

2 France

1 Czech Republic

8 Portugal

3 Ireland

13 Guernsey


​207 UK

2 Portugal

2 Austria

1 Switzerland

2 France

1 Germany

1 Holland

1 Portugal

9 Guernsey


​180 UK

5 France

12 Germany

3 Guernsey

6 Ireland

2 Portugal

1 Netherlands


​191 UK

1 Portugal

3 Guernsey


​71 UK

1 France

3 Guernsey

1 Holland

1 Portugal

1 Spain

1 Cook Islands

This information cannot be provided as non-resident undertaking businesses are not recorded by Standard Industry Classification (SIC) code, only by description of business activities.


The purpose of the CHWL is to control and limit the numbers of people able to access work and housing in Jersey. The CHWL applies to all businesses carrying out an undertaking in Jersey and all businesses being able to apply for permissions to employ staff. The following matters are taken into account under CHWL when issuing or varying a business licence, and when deciding the number of licensed or registered persons a business can employ:

  • preserving and maximising the benefits of Jersey’s resources

  • promoting a balanced and prosperous economy

  • protecting the integrity and reputation of Jersey in commercial and financial matters

  • any relevant policies of the States of Jersey

  • whether such a grant would be in the public interest


No complaints have been lodged within the Government of Jersey Customer Feedback Management System regarding this since its commencement in 2019.

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