Can a business license application be rejected when an international student established a foreign direct investment company?

International student “R”


“R” has decided to start a business during her study in Korea.

She established a company by means of foreign direct investment,

completed the corporate registration, and then visited a competent

tax office to register her business. However, her application for

business registration was rejected since she is a student visa holder.

In the case of foreign direct investment,

changing the status of sojourn should be the last step

The status of sojourn is not relevant in establishing a company


Foreigners who wish to conduct profit-making activities by establishing a business in Korea require a status of sojourn that legally allows the generation of business income. If the business registration is not completed, a registration certificate of a foreign-invested enterprise is not issued, and a visa is not issued accordingly.

Explanation of required documents for changing the status of

Sojourn under the Foreign Direct Investment Act

The Residence & Visa Division of the Ministry of Justice has publicly

released the Sojourn Guide for Foreigners on the website

( operated by the MOJ.

The guide includes activities allowed for each visa type,

eligible individuals, basic requirements, and required documents.

Based on the content of the guide, the international student ‘R’

can apply for a registration at the competent tax office.