If you want to start a business in another country, look no further than Dubai. Dubai, being a well-known trading hub of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, offers a plethora of advantages for businesses and corporations seeking to flourish, thrive, and connect with the rest of the globe.

Doing business in Dubai is becoming more accessible, with government procedures being cut by 30% to create a world-class startup ecosystem. With its entrepreneur-friendly business environment, favourable rules, and tax perks, Dubai remains a top destination for entrepreneurs. The city’s economic possibilities have attracted a growing number of businesses.

The Trade Licenses Available In Dubai


The many categories of trade licenses issued in Dubai are as follows:

  • Commercial Licenses – 

Are granted to businesses that engage in trading activities.

  • Industrial Licenses – 

These are granted to businesses that engage in manufacturing.

  • Professional Licenses –

Are granted to businesses that operate as service providers, professionals, artists, and craftspeople.

What Are The Many Types Of Businesses That Can Be Formed In Dubai?

These are all examples of entities that can be formed in Dubai.

  • Limited liability companies,
  • Private and public joint-stock companies,
  • Partnerships,
  • Branch offices,
  • Subsidiaries,
  • Free zone limited liability companies, and
  • Free zone establishments.

What You Should Know Before Getting Started?

In general, there are a few things you should be aware of before beginning the process of establishing your business in Dubai. Let’s go through them one by one:

Limited Liability Company (LLC) 

The shareholders’ liability in a Restricted Liability Company is limited to their capital. In Dubai, the maximum number of stockholders in an LLC is 50, while the minimum is 2. The corporation can engage in any business activity excluding insurance, banking, or monetary investment.

Onshore Company

An onshore company is a commercial structure that is founded and managed within the firm’s jurisdiction. There are various advantages to having an onshore corporation, such as favorable legislation, taxation laws for enterprises operating outside of the jurisdiction, extensive networks of tax treaties, developed business, banking, supporting sectors, and so on. The registration of an onshore corporation in the UAE is critical and advantageous.

Offshore Corporation

An offshore company is a legal corporate structure that is founded and managed outside of the firm’s jurisdiction.

Benefits Of Setting Up Your Business In Dubai


The following are the advantages of establishing your business in the Dubai Free Zone:

  • Taxes on personal or business income are completely free.
  • Investors have complete ownership regardless of their nationality or residence.
  • Capital and profits are 100% repatriated.
  • All import and export duties are waived.
  • Exemption from all company taxes for 15 years, with a 15-year renewal option with no capital deposit required.

Process Of Establishing A Startup In A Dubai Free Zone

When it comes to establishing a business, free zones are very popular among international entrepreneurs, and for good reason: they offer 0% corporation and personal tax, 100% company ownership, 100% repatriation of capital and earnings, and no currency restrictions.

Here are the seven actions you’ll need to follow to get your business up and running in the free zone:-

1. Identify Your Business Activity.

The first step in launching a business and obtaining a license is deciding on the type of your venture. There are approximately 2,100 business activities to choose from, all of which fall into distinct categories within the industrial, commercial, professional, and tourism sectors.

2. Select A Free Zone

The nature of your business may influence which free zone you choose to establish yourself in. In general, it makes sense to locate near other businesses in the same industry.

3. Select A Company Name

Your company name must comply with the UAE’s severe naming requirements. Names that contain derogatory language may be viewed as offensive to religion, or relate to political organizations or the mafia are prohibited. If you name your firm after a person, you must verify that person is a partner or owner of the company (no initials or abbreviations allowed).

Naming your company might be a difficult procedure. You can save time and work by hiring a professional to assist you in adhering to the standards and getting your name approved.

4. Submit An Application For Preliminary Approval

You’ll need to apply for preliminary approval to ensure that the Dubai DED has no objections to you beginning a business so that you can move forward with the licensing process. This can be applied online, in person, or through a third party (like through a law firm). The paperwork you’ll need to give will vary depending on the nature of your firm, but in general, they are:-

  • Form for business registration and licensing
  • A copy of your passport or identification
  • A copy of your visa/residence permit
  • The articles of incorporation of the company
  • The project’s feasibility study

If you need assistance applying, please contact one of our specialists who can walk you through the process and ensure you’ve submitted and prepared all necessary paperwork.

5. Establish A Corporate Bank Account

You can now open a corporate bank account after being approved and receiving all of the relevant documentation. There are numerous banks in the UAE, both domestic and international. Among them are HSBC, Citibank, Barclays, Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, Commercial Bank of Dubai, and numerous others.

6. Choose A Place For Your Office

Setting up the start-up in a free zone, on the other hand, will make it much easier to locate your new office space.

7. Submit An Application For Final Approval

You must prepare all of your paperwork, location addresses, and legal information before submitting them for final approval. Other agencies may need you to seek licensing approval in particular cases. When you’re finished, you’ll need to submit:-

  • The initial permission receipt, as well as all previously provided papers
  • A lease contract was created by the Real Estate Regulatory Agency (RERA)
  • Service agent contract duly attested (for civil institutions and companies controlled entirely by non-GCC residents), the UAE using a local service agent
  • Approval from other government agencies involved

Finally, you must pay for the license recognized using several recognized payment channels – and your firm is ready to go.

Documents Required For Establishing A Business In Dubai

  • The articles of association of the firm should include information on the company’s shareholders, directors, and business activities.
  • Copies of shareholders’ and directors’ passports that have been notarized and translated
  • The Trade Registrar issues duly filled forms.
  • Registration in Dubai can be challenging, so it is best to obtain the help of a professional business registration adviser before proceeding with your registration.

Are You Prepared To Start A Business In Dubai?

Although it may appear to be a lengthy process, setting up your firm will only take a few weeks if done correctly.

Contact us to learn how we can assist you in establishing your business in the world’s leading free trade zone and global commodities trading centre. We’ll help with every step of the route, from creating documentation, handling submissions, and assisting with translations to opening bank accounts, obtaining approval, and offering general advice and counselling.