Dubai has accelerated the pace of diversification and is experiencing sustained economic growth. The city issued 45,653 new business permits in the first half of 2022. This significantly surpasses the 36,647 permits issued in the first half of last year (2021), representing a 25% increase in business registrations. The main drivers of growth are pro-business government policies and programs, taxation and infrastructure.

The following areas can be chosen for setting up businesses in Dubai:

This jurisdiction is ideal for investment as it allows investors to reach a multicultural audience and extend their reach to the UAE’s local market. This is very beneficial for companies registered in this Dubai jurisdiction. Here the company can be registered as his 100% foreign owned.

 Registering a company in this zone is relatively easier than registering a company on the mainland. The advantages of starting a business in this zone include VAT exemption with 100% profit transfer, exemption from submission of audit report, 100% ownership.

 Offshore jurisdictions refer to territories beyond the borders of their respective regions. Here the company is registered in Dubai, but the company’s headquarters are outside the borders of Dubai. The main purpose of company registration in this jurisdiction is to coordinate international trade.

Types of Company Structures Utilised in Dubai

The following structures would be utilised for company registration in Dubai:

A partner’s liability is limited to the amount of its shares. This type of company can be registered in mainland jurisdictions and offers 100% foreign ownership.

This type of firm is usually formed by professionals such as lawyers, accountants, and doctors. The company can be registered with the relevant Dubai Emirate Economic Development Authority.  

This type of company is usually incorporated outside of Dubai. However, the office will be opened and operated in Dubai. It is merely an extension of its parent company and does not exist as a separate legal entity.

A corporation is a type of company that is jointly owned by its shareholders. There are two types of joint stock companies: public companies and private companies. A shareholder’s liability is limited to the company’s shares.

Eligibility Criteria for Company Registration in Dubai  

The following eligibility criteria are required for company registration in Dubai:

  • The applicant should have all the necessary licenses before initiating the company registration process in Dubai. The indicative list of required licenses are as follows:
  1. Commercial licences covering all kinds of trading activity;
  2. Professional licences covering professions, services, craftsmen and artisans;
  3. Industrial licences for establishing industrial or manufacturing.
  • Usually, an individual would enter into some form of profit-sharing arrangement with the local profits and agree on some sharing ratio which has to be decided by the parties.
  • Aviation
  • Broadcasting & Entertainment
  • Education
  • Immigration
  • Information Technology / Cyber Law
  • Maritime and Shipping
  • Non-Profit Organizations
  • Pharmaceutical
  • Real Estate
  • Local & Transnational M&A, De-merger, Acquisition and Takeovers
  • Venture Capital / Private Equity Funds
  • Employment Laws
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Managing Partner

Legallands LLP