The Complete Guide to Setting up Your Business in Dubai with Initial Approval
Starting a business is a major decision. Planning, conceptualization, research, budgeting, and decision-making are all involved. It also necessitates assistance and advice in a variety of processes, such as selecting the appropriate trade license. The process of starting a business in Dubai or the UAE can be confusing if you do not have the proper advice.
This article will teach you everything you need to know about starting a business in Dubai, including the step-by-step procedure and considerations. You will also learn how to take advantage of the UAE’s low tax policies and the type of trade license that is appropriate for your business.
How can Connect Zone help you start a business in the UAE?
⏺️ Decide on commercial activity.
The country’s low tax policies and ease of doing business have positioned it as a business pivot in the Middle East. However, when selecting a business activity for your upcoming venture, consider the viability of the activity in relation to the market you wish to enter.
So, before starting a business in a country, you should look into how profitable and possible the business is.
The top ten most successful business activities in the UAE are as follows:
✔️Construction: Opportunities abound for architects, construction firms, engineers, and other professionals in this field.
✔️ Handyman: Before you begin this type of business, you should conduct marketing and financial research.
✔️ Oil and gas are the dominant industry in Dubai, generating massive revenue for investors through operations such as exploitation, transportation, extraction, and distribution.
✔️ Real estate agent: You must seek advice from a consulting firm and obtain the necessary licenses for this type of business.
✔️ Travel and tourism: There are numerous opportunities in all types of tourism, such as business tourism, sports tourism, cultural tourism, and shopping tourism.
✔️ Job Agencies: Many ex-pats arrive in the UAE in search of work, and all businesses are struggling to find skilled and professional employees.
E-commerce, web, mobile, and internet marketing are the areas where both foreign and domestic investors are most likely to put their money.
The increased popularity of high-end vehicles in the UAE has created a huge opportunity for online tyre traders.
You must understand the requirements for this business, as well as fashion trends and products.
Business consulting is a lucrative industry that necessitates experience and expertise.
⏺️ Select a jurisdiction.
The United Arab Emirates is divided into three economic zones:
✔️ Offshore vs. Mainland
✔️ Offshore Zone of Liberty Company: This is a popular business structure in the region.
These jurisdictions offer similar services but have different strategic goals.
They are issued by the Department of Economic Development in the emirate.
Mainland companies, on the other hand, are free to operate in the UAE and elsewhere.
For foreign investors, establishing a company in one of the UAE’s free zones may be the best option.
The UAE has 35 free-trade zones, with 20 of them located in Dubai.
Similarly, one of the primary benefits of establishing a business in a free zone is that no national shareholding is required.
They are, however, referred to as “jurisdictions,” and each has its own set of business regulations and laws.
As a result, each economic zone is responsible for a distinct set of business requirements. Consider that your company’s needs determine your business jurisdiction.
⏺️ Complete the company’s legal structure and form.
One of the most important decisions you will make when starting a business in the UAE is the legal structure of your company.
It establishes the framework for dealing with profits and losses, for starters. It also helps you organise your assets and resources.
Consider the legal structure when deciding how to start a business in the UAE. As a result, your company’s legal structure will benefit.
The following are some of the company structures or legal forms in which you can register your company in the UAE:
✔️ Local company with only one location.
✔️ Limited liability corporation (LLC) (LLC).
✔️ A business that operates within a free zone.
✔️ Companies headquartered in Dubai have a branch.
✔️ Companies with branches in the UAE
✔️ A GCC company.
✔️ A foreign company.
✔️ Holding Company
⏺️ Obtain permission for the name and activity of your company.
The DED must approve your company’s trade name before you can begin the setup process.
During this stage, however, your chosen business setup activity is also approved.
Once you have received approval from the Department of Economic Development, you must submit all paperwork and certificate attestation.
To summarise, once this process is completed, you can begin the process of establishing your business.
⏺️ Submit a business licence application.
There are four types of trade licences, also known as business licences, in the United Arab Emirates:
✔️ Commercial License: This is one of the most common types of licences in the UAE; it is applied for by businesses that buy and sell physical goods. A Dubai licence also allows businesses to operate in the UAE or elsewhere.
✔️ Professional License: Companies that rely on people’s mental abilities are required to obtain a professional license.
✔️ Consultants, lawyers, mechanics, and IT service providers, for example, can obtain this licence.
✔️ Industrial License: Because this industry relies on professional skills, every specialist must obtain this type of licence in order to work in the UAE.
Dubai has established itself as a global pioneer and a magnet for foreign investment, international travelers, and casual visitors.
licences if you are wondering how to start a business in the UAE. Similarly, your company’s business activity will determine the licencing structure, which varies by free zone.
⏺️ Register your business.
Obtaining a trade licence and registering your company are two separate processes. As a result, the entire process of submitting documents and receiving approval goes through several stages.
To meet the requirements of the Department of Economic Development, you must get permission from the UAE government.
⏺️ Locate a local representative (if required).
Previously, it was necessary to find a local partner in order to establish a company in Dubai. Most importantly, the local partner could only be a UAE national.
Finding a reliable representative can take time, especially for people who want to start a small business in Dubai or the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Business consultants, on the other hand, act as a link between you and the companies that provide corporate sponsorship. Above all, you will receive documented authority and complete ownership of your company.
⏺️ Obtain all necessary external approvals.
Depending on your company’s activity, the Department of Economic Development may seek approval from other governments and non-governmental organisations.
Some businesses, for instance, may need to get permission from embassies, banks, and, in some cases, local governments.
⏺️ Create an understanding memorandum.
To begin a business in Dubai, the applicant must first understand the complexities of the Memorandum of Association (MOA).
That is, the document is written in accordance with UAE government directives.
So, before starting a business in Dubai, you should think about what your business goals are.
⏺️ A workplace, an office
If you are starting a business in Dubai, you can choose between a shared office in a business centre and renting an office, depending on your needs.
In other words, your office space may have an impact on the number of visas you can request from the DED.
⏺️ Obtain the tenancy agreement and Ejari
When establishing a business in the UAE or Dubai, you may require the services of an ejari. To summarise, an ejari is a mandatory registration of your tenancy contract between you and a real estate agency. Furthermore, the Real Estate Regulatory Agency (RERA) established an online system for it.
This system, without a doubt, ensures transparency and fairness between the parties involved in the tenancy. As a result, in order to activate the Ejari, the applicant must submit the tenancy contract and other documents. This is a very important document because you will need it to get a visa for yourself or to renew a visa for a family member.
⏺️ Secure preliminary approval
To obtain a business licence, the applicant must first obtain approval from the Department of Economic Development.
Furthermore, the approval shows that the United Arab Emirates government does not object to the applicant starting the business.
Most importantly, if you do not receive DED approval, the process cannot move forward.
⏺️ Obtain your business license.
You must submit the following documents to obtain a UAE trade licence:
✔️ Trade licence application
✔️ Relevant government forms
✔️ Trade name reservation certificate
✔️ Certificate of initial approval
✔️ Memorandum of Association (MOA)
✔️ External approvals (if any)
✔️ Ejari registration certificate
✔️ A tenancy contract
✔️ Copies of partner passports
✔️ NOC for partners (if any) (if any)
The documents and the fees needed by the government must be sent to the Department of Economic Development.
⏺️ Why should I establish a company in the UAE?
The UAE is an ideal business destination for a variety of industries due to its location in the heart of Asia and adjacent to Europe.
Furthermore, the UAE’s business-friendly environment aligns with global practises and encourages entrepreneurs to invest in new business ventures.
Similarly, the UAE provides its operations with the lowest tax policies in the world.
However, the policy of unrestricted capital repatriation and the financial freedom of the companies. To summarise, this level of financial independence is uncommon in highly developed business territories. Lastly, all of the UAE’s benefits make it a great place for entrepreneurs and foreign investors to set up shop.