Selection and change of the field of activity

How to choose or change the type of activity of an Estonian company? 

Each company to be registered in Estonia must indicate the main field of activity in which it plans to carry out the main scope of economic activity.


What are EMTAK and NACE activity codes?

Entrepreneurs often encounter the need to select and designate an activity field, most commonly during company registration or when submitting an annual report.

On a legislative level, matters related to the activity fields of Estonian enterprises are regulated by Article 4 of the Estonian Commercial Code:

а) An entrepreneur can be engaged in all types of activities which are not prohibited by law.

b) The law may establish types of activities which require an activity permit (license) or which only entrepreneurs of a certain type can be engaged in.

c) When registering in the Commercial Register, the entrepreneur indicates the planned main type of activity and, if necessary, reports changes in the types of activities. The company, which is obliged to submit a report to the Commercial Register for the business year, indicates in its annual report the activities which took place in the past business year and the activities within which it plans to operate in the future. An enterprise is not obliged to submit a separate notification on changes of types of activities. The EMTAK classifier of economic activities is used when notifying the Commercial Register of the type of activity of the company.

It follows that the choice of the main type of activity does not impose any restrictions on the company within the scope of its business activities. Information about the main type of activity of the company is entered in the Commercial Register and is used mainly for informative purposes and for the collection of statistical data.


How to choose the right area of activity of the company?

When registering a company, only one proposed type of activity is indicated, which should be as close as possible to the essence of the planned economic activity of the company to be established.

EMTAK classifier

The sphere of activity of an Estonian company is selected from the specialized classifier of economic activities EMTAK with the accuracy of 5 digits. The EMTAK classifier is an adapted version of the international harmonized NACE classifier of types of activities.


Can I do business in other areas as well?

The selection of the main type of activity does not mean that the company cannot also operate in other areas, since the field of activity is not a legally binding circumstance for the company.

Freedom of selecting directions for your business

Every company has the full right to conduct business in any industry that is not restricted or does not require a license to conduct business. No separate action, including notification of state authorities or registration of new activities in the Commercial Register, is required in order to start a business in areas that are different from the previously declared type of activity.


How to change the type of activity of the company?

Unfortunately, it is not possible to change the type of activity of an Estonian company in the current regime by submitting a corresponding application to the Commercial Register. Those companies, which have been entered in the register and have already indicated the main type of activity, have the possibility to add or to change the field of activity only together with the filing of the annual report.

Change of the company’s activity type

If the company has conducted business activities which are different from the type of economic activity previously indicated in the Commercial Register – this fact must be shown in the annual report of the company. After submission of the financial statements and their processing by the state authorities, the new type of activity together with the EMTAK code will automatically appear on the company registry card.


If you need help selecting a business area code in the EMTAK classifier, or if you would like to change your current main type of activity – feel free to contact our accountants and consultants! Together we will find the most suitable and efficient solution.

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