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Complete Guide on Business Setup in Dubai

If you are interested in Business Setup in Dubai, you have just landed on the right page. The commercial capital Dubai is not only known for its skyscrapers, luxury shopping, glitzy nightlife, and a plethora of career options. The city of gold offers the most diverse range of business opportunities and modules that upend conventional thinking. If you’re interested in Setting up a Company in Dubai, read on to know the important things before getting started.

Based on your business type, you can decide the jurisdiction to start a company in Dubai.

Before investing, gain a grasp of the UAE’s ownership alternatives. They have classified it into three different business setting categories:

  • Mainland
  • Free Zone
  • Offshore

Investors can start a company in any of the three jurisdictions in Dubai- Mainland, Freezone, and Offshore. All these jurisdictions have evident differences concerning several criteria.

Company incorporation in Dubai is done in several steps. You can contact us to get a complete timeline of the process.


Decide the jurisdiction and business activity:

To start with the company incorporation process, you need to identify the proper jurisdiction in Dubai. Different jurisdictions in Dubai offer different advantages to investors. Therefore, you have to decide the type or nature of business you are willing to start in Dubai.

Here are the three main jurisdictions in Dubai:

The mainland jurisdiction:

A mainland company is an onshore company registered under the government authority of the concerned Emirate. This means you will have the authorization to trade in the local market and outside the market of the UAE. This jurisdiction offers restrictionless trading opportunities.

Mainland company setup in Dubai can be a lucrative investment option for investors and business establishments. Dubai’s business structure is adaptable in ownership, and investors can participate in various developed areas.

Free zone:

A free zone in Dubai is the area that has special tax, customs, and imports regimes. In the UAE, Dubai free zones allow for 100 percent foreign ownership and zero corporate tax for the next 50 years. The country’s several Free Zones are home to some of the world’s largest commodities firms, including ENI, American Express, General Mills, Total, Viacom, and Petronas, to name a few.


Suppose you want to set up a company with the intention of operating outside its registered jurisdiction or the location of its ultimate ownership. In that case, offshore location is the right jurisdiction for you.

Understanding the distinctions between several jurisdictions might assist you in quickly narrowing down your alternatives.

Consider the location in terms of international transportation connections and other businesses in the area. It is advantageous to situate your business near other businesses in the same sector.

Step- 2

Select the legal form of business with name.

Bear in mind that the United Arab Emirates has some very strict name conventions. Make sure that you understand what they are and choose a name that fits.

These are some of the legal forms of business:

  • Sole Proprietorship– It’s an entity owned by one individual.
  • Limited Liability Company (LLC)- is an entity owned by one individual or more than one.
  • Civil Company- It is an entity owned by more than one shareholder.
  • Branch Company- It is an entity 100% Owned by the Parent Company.

You can avoid the hassle by having your proposed name-checked by our specialist, who will be able to tell you whether it complies before you register it.


Apply for initial approval & trade name reservation

In this stage, you have to register the business activity and the trade name with the Department of Economic Development of the respective Emirate you are looking forward to setting up your business along with the necessary documents. This step involves a whole lot of paperwork. But don’t worry. Our experts are here to help you out.


Prepare MOA

A Memorandum of Association (MOA) is a legal document written during a business’s establishment and registration to clarify its relationship with its shareholders and specify its objectives. The MOA establishes the limit to which the company’s actions cannot extend. The company is limited to the operations specified in the Memorandum of Association. It would help if you prepared MOA to get the company license.


Rent a physical space & acquire Ejari (Tenancy Contract)

Once you’ve finalized your legal procedures and papers, it’s a good idea to choose a few offices and obtain pricing and other information. In Dubai, all the new businesses must have a physical office address.

Step -6

Apply for a business license and get it approved by government authorities.

You’ll need to prepare all your documentation, location addresses, and legal information to submit for final approval. In some cases, you’ll need to apply for licensing clearance from other authorities.

These are several types of business licenses :

  • Professional license- Service Activities like It Services, Marketing, Accounting, etc.
  • Commercial license- All kinds of trading activities such as General, Electronic & Any Specific Trading.
  • Industrial license- The activities related to manufacturing come under Industrial License.

You’ll need to pay for the license via one of the permitted payment methods – and your firm is now operational.


Opening a business banking account

In Dubai, corporate bank accounts are typically required to maintain a certain minimum balance. Additionally, company accounts can be multi-currency.

First, Abu Dhabi Bank, Emirates NBD, and Dubai Islamic Bank are the most popular commercial banks. However, larger international banks such as HSBC and Standard Chartered are also viable options if you are looking for Business Setup in Dubai.

After completing all the stages mentioned above, you will be prepared to run your business. In comparison to other regions of the world, establishing a business in the UAE is rather simple — the UAE is placed 25th in the latest World Bank Ease of Doing Business rankings.

We get the establishment card and register the company with the general directorate of residency and foreign affairs. We also courier the entire corporate documents to our clients for their records if needed.

With us, starting a company in Dubai is like a cakewalk. If done right, business setup in Dubai is quite easy and hassle-free. If you want a professional assistant throughout the process, get in touch with your business setup consultant.

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