FAQs on Company Formation

Are you interested to invest in UAE Free Trade Zones?

[These are excerpts from discussions with our clients highlighting questions being asked frequently by prospective investors]

Which are the leading commercial places in UAE?

UAE comprises of 7 Emirates namely Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al Quwain, Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah. All these emirates are actively promoting business and trade. All these Emirates have Free Trade Zones except in Abu Dhabi.

What are the leading free zones in UAE?

Jebel Ali Free Zone, Dubai Airport Free Zone, Dubai Internet City, Dubai Media City, SAIF Zone, Hamriyah Free Zone, Ajman Free Zone and Ras Al Khaimah Free Zone.

As an expatriate investor can I set up a trading concern fully owned by me?

The Federal Law of UAE restricts the ownership to an expatriate in a trading company to 49% whereas in free trade zones expatriate can set up 100% owned.

What are the legal forms available to establish a business in the free zone?

Branch of Foreign Company, Free Zone Establishment and Free Zone Company are the legal forms required to establish business in free zones.

What is the minimum capital to form an LLC in Dubai and in Sharjah?

AED 300,000 (USD 81,810) in Dubai and AED 150,000 (USD 40,905) in Sharjah and other Emirates.

Can I have a General Trading License in Dubai?

The L.L.C shall have specific activities as per classification made by the Department of Economic Development, Dubai. The company can have multiple activities with General Trading License where additional fees of USD 4,100 will be levied by licensing authorities in the year of incorporation and USD 1370 annually.

Which activities require special approval?

License to practice majority of the activities are directly issued by the licensing authority in the respective Emirate. However, certain activities require special approval from the related Ministry/Department.(for e.g., medical, pharmacy etc.- Ministry of Health; air transport, air cargo etc. – Department of Civil Aviation, financial institutions, banks, money exchange etc.- central bank; new industrial project, expansion – Ministry of Finance and industry; publishing, printing, newspaper, advertising, video film, photography etc., - Ministry of Information; education, training etc. – Ministry of Education; agriculture, veterinary etc.- Ministry of Agriculture; customs clearance, freight forwarding, sea cargo etc. – seaports & customs authority, telecommunication equipment – Ministry of Communication; branch of foreign company, insurance company, audit firm etc. – Ministry of Economy & Commerce)

Is there any taxation in UAE?

Currently there is no corporate or personal tax applicable to business organizations or employees in UAE.

How can I obtain my visa to stay in UAE?

Visa (Residence Permit) shall be issued after obtaining the trade license and completing the immigration formalities.

How long the Residence visa permit is valid?

Residence Permit is valid for 3 years and can be renewed for similar period.

How can I bring my family to UAE?

Once your residence permit formalities are over, you can sponsor your wife and children.

What are the documents to be brought from my country to sponsor my family?

Your marriage certificate and the children’s birth certificate duly attested from UAE Embassy.

If I set up company in Dubai and obtain residence permit can I travel other emirates freely?

Yes, you can travel other emirates since the residence permit is valid for entire UAE.

Can I buy property in Dubai?

In Dubai, an expatriate can buy properties offered by Emaar Properties, Nakheel Corporation and Jumeirah Residence which are available in certain demarcated areas.

How this country is secured for investment and living?

The country is very much secured for investment and living. Majority of the UAE population is expatriate.

Is there any duty or levies charged by government authorities?

There is no duty or levy charged by government departments except 5% import duty for the products imported to main land. However, companies operating ion free zones are exempted from import duty also.

How efficient are the seaport facilities?

UAE has excellent port facilities on its west and east coasts viz. Mina Zayed, Port Rashid, Jebel Ali Port, Port Khalid, Khor Fakkan Port and Fujairah Port. Jebel Ali Port is the largest man made port in the world. These facilities enable even the world’s largest container ships to access the port with ease.

What options are available for schooling of children?

In order to cater to expatriate population from various parts of the world, there are schools offering American, British, Indian, Pakistani and European curricula.

What are the recreational facilities available?

Recreational facilities available in most of the leading cities are available in UAE ranging from cinema, theatre, theme parks, water sports, apart from those unique to this region like desert safari, etc.

What is the climatic condition in UAE?

The summer temperature often goes above 42°C but winter months from October to April are quite cool, with temperatures going down 14ºC