For most business industries in a single proprietorship you only need to register to these two government agencies: the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR).
This is part 2 of The Ultimate Guide to Starting a Business in the Philippines series.
Table of Contents:
Department of Trade and Industry
DTI is where you will register your business name.
Other services require special registrations from governing agencies tasked to regulate the trade of certain products or services. These are businesses related to food, drugs, animals and plant exports, garment and textile exports, fish and other aquatic product exports, processing and trading of fiber products, firearms and explosives, service and maintenance of vehicles, radio and electronic communications, tourism, security agencies, and more. These special registrations won’t be covered in this article.
To identify which industries are available to be registered in the Philippines, check out the Philippine Standard Industrial Classification (PSIC).
You need to register your business name with DTI first before you can proceed to BIR for your business registration.
Bureau of Internal Revenue
BIR is where you will register your business so you can pay taxes.
If you have ever been employed you must already be a taxpayer. First thing you should find out is the Regional District Office (RDO) where you are registered as a taxpayer. You may get this information from your employer or if you already have one, from your latest Income Tax Return (ITR) document. In a BIR form to be filled out, RDO is a 3-digit code. If you are unsure, you can check the RDO list from the BIR website and search for your respective region.
For example, in Revenue Region No. 8A MAKATI CITY there are 2 RDOs: Revenue District Office No. 47- East Makati City and Revenue District Office No. 48 - West Makati City.
Usually, employers update your RDO when they hire you to the RDO where their business is registered. And more often, that RDO is where your employer’s main office is located. If for example the office is located in East Makati, when you fill this out in the form you input
047. But it is better to be sure which RDO you are registered than to assume because you need to know your RDO so that you know which BIR branch you should go to and which lane you should fall in line to. Waiting lanes are often labeled by RDO.
If you do not have any employment history, you should proceed to the RDO within the scope of the location of your business. For online businesses without a physical address, you should proceed to the RDO where you reside.
Lastly, you need to have a Taxpayer’s Identification Number (TIN). For existing employees, you can also find this on your ITR. For first time taxpayers, you need to apply for a TIN first. This will no longer be covered in this article.
You need to know both your RDO and TIN in order to proceed with the BIR registration.