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Start a business in the United Arab Emirates


Nov 4, 2020

If you are looking to establish a business in the United Arab Emirates, find out everything you need to know about the relevantregulations, systems,business conditions and procedures in this article, How to start a business in Dubai free zone.

There are a few points of interest to Business Setup in DubaiUAE, as indicated by ‘Working together 2017’ (a leader World Bank report), the UAE is positioned 26th internationally in the simplicity of working together there. Expats setting up a business in the UAE make the most of its vital area as the passage to both the east and west. With incredible transportation networks associating all significant pieces of the world, it is a considerable advance to consider. The UAE is additionally strategically and socially stable, which makes it alluring to financial specialists. The UAE considered a strategic trans-shipment location between Africa, Asia and Europe.As an entrepreneur in the UAE,the advantage of developing economies cater to all across the globe. The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) of six countries follow Schengen model of operating their economy.

The main advantages of setting up a business in the UAE are

  • Easy access to emerging markets and strategic geographical location
  • Flight to Quality: Highly compliant with International standards and reporting requirements
  • World-class Jurisdiction with mature banking and legal system
  • Well connected to the main Highways, Airports and Sea Ports of the UAE. The largest air
    cargo hub in the Middle East and North Africa
  • The competitive manufacturing sector and diversified economic structure
  • Strong Fiscal Position
  • Simplified customs procedure and some of the licenses issued within 24 hours
  • A real economy with GDP per capita of USD 40,000
  • Top ranks in ease of doing business & world government trust indexes
  • High-quality of life, diversified and business-friendly environment
  • An abundant ecosystemof ample professionals, experts, offices and resources
  • No Taxation and No restrictions on capital and profit repatriation
  • Access to a broad range of UAE Double tax treaty network
  • Low Cost of doing business in Ras Al Khaimah and Sharjah

How Free Zones Help Boost the UAE Economy

Freezone company formation in the UAEis vital for world trade. Now there are more than 3,500 Special Economic Zones or Free Zones located in 130 countries and, together, they handle around 3.5 million dollars (2.8 million euros) in annual exports, according to the Organization for Cooperation and Development Economic (OECD). Compared to a total global export figure of $ 15.46 trillion (€ 12.57 trillion), this means that 22.63% of all exports originate in the free zone. More than 66 million people are employed by companies registered in free zones.

Altogether, the Middle East handles exports worth 552 billion dollars (449 billion euros) from its free zones. Only Dubai take goods worth 118,000 million dollars (96 million euros). Exports from the UAE free zones amounted to $ 61.39 million (€ 49.95 million) in 2017, representing a 6.6% growth over the previous year, according to the Central Bank of the United States. UAE. That is equivalent to 19.5% of the country’s total exports during the last 12 months.

The word “free” here essentially means “free from normal regulation”. Free Zones in the UAE offer foreign investors 100% equity in companies registered with them, without corporate taxes, import and export duties, 100% repatriation of income and profits, reduced documentation and smoother recruitment and visa process for employees.

Types of Businesses

It is crucial to determine the type of business you want to start, as the rules and regulations will be different. You will need to have an Emirati partner who owns at least 51% commercial property or has partnered with a local service representative, with 100% commercial property owned by them as an investor. Be sure to check the entrepreneurship laws with the UAE authorities. In contrast, free zone areas do not have a restriction on 100% ownership in the UAE.

The Representative of the UAE

LLCs, Private Joint Stock (PJSC) and Public Joint Stock (PrJSC) must partner with a UAE public partner to create them. This instruction is also suitable in case you are making a joint organization with a design movement. Your Emirati partner will be the person who will support the business and can also take full responsibility for the industry regarding rental, book supervision, etc.

The Local Service Agent

Professional companies providing vat consultancy services in Dubai need a local service agent to open anyprofessional services company under non-free zone area. For example, if you are opening a branch of a foreign company or a professional company (without mechanical activity). A local service representative must be a local citizen or company whose foreign nationals wholly own capital and ownership. The agent will undertake all the procedures for obtaining work and residence visas but does not interfere in the management of the company, or you can avail all these powers from UAE National by preparing agreements with local labour department endorsement.


If you are opening a branch of a foreign company, you must first receive a certified letter or resolution from the parent company. You will then be asked for approval by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,and UAE Ministries depends on the type of activity involved. However, the service agent can be directly involved in the business of the company and can earn income. Human Resources recruitment activity licensesin mainland areas given to UAE nationals only.

The Free Zone

If you do not want to involve any UAE citizen in your business Best Free Zone in UAE,and you prefer to have full ownership, the Free Zone is for you. You may want to start a business at FTZ because you will be a 100% business owner. The Free Zone represents advantages such as the non-involvement of a UAE national partner in your industry. Your business will also benefit from duty and tax exemption under the terms of the emirate where you chose to start your business. However, you must appoint a dealer or distributor to sell your company products or services at a tax rate of about 5%. The consultants of the free zone of the emirate in which you want to settle will explain the procedures to be followed. Besides, free zone companies require less paperwork.

Human Capital and Support Systemto run a business smoothly

The State has more than 9.60 million population living in UAE serving various industries, doing business and having retirement life. Skilled and non-skilled workers quickly recruited from nearby countries. Experienced workforce already available serving industries like legal, professional,engineering, manufacturing, building construction, insurance, banking and finance, textile, automobile,processing, packing, shipping, logistics, technology, automation etc.,

Every company need approval from the LaborDepartmentand to obtaina company card to recruit employees from the Immigration department.

How to start a mainland company in UAE

The company set up in mainland is very similar to free zone except mainland companies require to have a 51% UAE national shareholder as per UAE companies act. The relevant activity license obtained fromthe department of economic development (DED).

For comments, more details and specific enquiries, please feel free to contact a senior consultant at info@alphaequitymc.com

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