The organization of markets is generally possible without a permit. However, certain privileges are associated with the establishment of a market, e.g. with regard to Sunday and public holiday law, store closing time law, working hours law, trade law and catering law. The privileges under trade law include, in particular, the exemption from the travel trade permit for the sale of goods pursuant to Section 55 (1) No. 1 of the Trade, Commerce and Industry Regulation Act (GewO).
For non-established markets, however, the general regulations apply. Upon application by the organizer, the competent authority shall establish a fair, exhibition, wholesale market, weekly market, special market or fair according to subject matter, time, opening hours and place (§ 69 Gewerbeordnung - GewO). Only commercial market vendors can be established, but not a flea market of private individuals.
The events that can be established are described in more detail below:
A trade fair
is a temporary, generally regularly recurring event at which a large number of exhibitors display the essential range of products of one or more branches of industry and sell them predominantly by sample to commercial resellers, commercial consumers or bulk buyers (§ 64 GewO).
is an event of limited duration at which a large number of exhibitors display and distribute a representative range of one or more economic sectors or economic areas or provide information about this range for the purpose of sales promotion (Section 65 GewO).
A wholesale market
is an event at which a large number of vendors sell certain goods or goods of all kinds essentially to commercial resellers, commercial consumers or bulk buyers (Section 68 GewO).
A weekly market is a regularly recurring event of limited duration at which a large number of vendors offer for sale one or more of the following types of goods (Section 67 GewO):
1. Foodstuffs within the meaning of § 1 of the Foodstuffs and Consumer Goods Act with the exception of alcoholic beverages; alcoholic beverages are permitted insofar as they are produced from home-grown products of viticulture, agriculture or fruit growing and horticulture; the purchase of alcohol for the production of liqueurs and spirits from fruit, plants and other agricultural raw materials, where the raw materials are not fermented by the original producer, is permitted;
2. Products of orcharding, horticulture, agriculture, forestry, and fishing;
3. Raw natural products, with the exception of larger livestock.
A special market
is an event generally recurring regularly at longer intervals and limited in time, at which a large number of vendors offer certain goods for sale (§ 68 GewO).
is an event generally recurring at regular intervals and limited in time, at which a large number of vendors offer goods of all kinds (§ 69 GewO).
The regulations on the fixing of markets also apply to public festivals. However, these are not subject to any privileges with regard to the travel trade card, for example.
A folk festival
is a generally regularly recurring event of limited duration at which a large number of vendors carry out entertainment activities within the meaning of Section 55 (1) No. 2 and offer for sale goods that are usually offered at events of this kind (Section 60b GewO).
Real estate agents, property developers and construction supervisors as well as auctioneers are also subject to the regulations on standing trade at established markets.
At public festivals, weekly markets and fairs, the organizer may only demand remuneration for the provision of space and stands and for the use of utilities and supply services, including waste disposal. In addition, in the case of public festivals and fairs, the organizer may demand a contribution to the costs of advertising (§ 71 GewO).
The principles of public holiday law must be taken into account in the determination decision. It must be examined in detail in each individual case whether the market to be fixed is compatible with the principles of Sunday and public holiday law. According to case law, the offering of goods of all kinds on the market does not generally outweigh the protection of Sundays. As a rule, there should be no market setting on silent days. However, this does not preclude the establishment of markets in individual cases if the serious character of these days is preserved.
In principle, a residence permit is required, which allows the exercise of the self-employed activity.
The requirements for the determination are the reliability of the organizer, no contradiction of the event to the public interest (the principles of the Sunday and holiday law must also be taken into account when determining the market), no holding of special markets or fairs in stores.
In order to assess reliability, the applicant is generally required to submit an official certificate of good conduct or an extract from the criminal record of his or her home country or an equivalent document and/or a certificate of good conduct for public authorities (Section 30 (5) of the Federal Central Register Act) and information from the Central Trade Register (Section 150 (5) of the Trade Regulation Act). If, on the basis of the foreigner's previous residence, it can be assumed that facts relevant to trade law are no longer or not yet contained in the aforementioned certificates and proofs, the presentation of the foreign or German certificates can be waived.
A travel trade card is required for public festivals.