Setup a Business in UAE

The UAE has emerged as a global business hub, thanks to its open business community that welcomes entrepreneurs with tax advantage, state of the art infrastructure and consistent law and order. Laying the foundation of a business requires a lot of prior exploration and due diligence. With the UAE government offering a host of licensing opportunities, it can be overwhelming. Here is a tool kit for setting up your dream business. Deciding your business activity is the first step . Your business activity must fall within one of the six types of license categories broadly: Industrial, Commercial, Professional, Tourism, Agricultural and Occupational. More than 2,000 business activities are allowed under these license categories.

It is also essential to select an appropriate company and brand name sensitive to the local culture and values, and not already registered. The Department of Economic Development (DED) or respective free zones/jurisdiction approves your company’s name and selected business activity.

The next step is to determine the legal structure and ownership that will depend upon the nature and objective of your business . This will structure the business and help recognize applicable laws and regulations.

Prepare documentation and apply for a mainland or a free zone trade license . Once you have trade license, you can apply for a Bank account ,make sure that all your basic documents are up to date. Once you have a Bank account in place, you can contact your bankers for other value added services like financing, cash management, trade services etc.

    They include:
  • Application form
  • Business plan
  • All relevant local and home country IDs
  • Passport copies of shareholders, partners and managers
  • Financial reports and bank statements
  • NOC from sponsor (in case of mainland business application)
  • Letter of intent
  • Curriculum vitae (for freelancers)
  • Bank reference letter

Pillars of a successful SME Business