RAK ICC has emerged as one of the leading offshore jurisdictions in the world in the recent years. An increasingly large number of investors and shareholders are either setting up their international business companies with RAK ICC or migrating their existing offshore companies from other jurisdictions to the registry.

There are numerous reasons for RAK ICC’s increased popularity. Here is a list of seven (7) best known reasons for which RAK ICC stands out as a top offshore jurisdiction in the world.

1. Full Suite of Services

RAK ICC has developed its products keeping in view the needs of the investors and shareholders around the world. It offers full suite of services with flexible options for the shareholders for setting up their companies to meet their precise needs. RAK ICC Companies Regulations cater for companies for carrying out international business activities, investment and trading, holding, securitization and asset protection for the shareholders. The shareholders can opt for DIFC or ADGM common law courts or the Ras Al Khaimah civil law courts.

2. International Standards

RAK ICC meets the international standards by having highly effective set of regulations, procedures and compliance standards.  It follows developments around the world to ensure that its regulations, policies and procedures are constantly updated and meet the latest legal requirements. The most recent initiatives taken by the registry include amendments to the anti-money laundering and countering financial terrorism policies. There has also been an introduction of a register of beneficial ownership and compliance drive with the UAE economic substance requirements regulations. For these reasons, investors and shareholders place huge amount of trust in this jurisdiction.

3. Taxation

Any businesses incorporated in the UAE take advantage of the favorable tax regime and a large network of double taxation treaties and bilateral agreements signed by the UAE. The UAE is a party to more than 200 tax agreements which include 123 agreements to avoid double taxation. RAK ICC offers lost-cost setting up and maintenance of companies coupled with a strong legal regime which meets the international best practices and standards.

4. Redomiciliation

There has been a recent shift in focus by shareholders from traditional offshore jurisdictions to other mid-shore and onshore jurisdictions for various changes and restrictions in the traditional offshore jurisdictions. Some of these traditional offshore jurisdictions are unable to meet the economic substance requirements.  A move to the UAE may be an effective way to meet the economic substance requirements keeping in view the resources available in the UAE. Due to its strong reputation, RAK ICC has come out as a highly sought-after jurisdiction for existing offshore companies in the traditional offshore jurisdictions. By redomiciling to RAK ICC, these companies are now able to not only maintain their existing legal status but also preserve their complete operational and banking history.

5. Access to the UAE Market

The international business or offshore companies established with the RAK ICC are only permitted to carry out international business activities or act a holding companies. Hence, it is not permitted for these companies to carry out any business activity inside the UAE. However, thanks to the premium product offered by the registry, pursuant to which a RAK offshore company can now establish wholly owned free zone companies with Ras Al Khaimah Economic Zone. The free zone company can then carry out the relevant business activities inside the UAE.

Related: 5 Key Benefits of RAK ICC Premium Product

6. Estate Planning

The shareholders of RAK offshore companies can now protect their interests and beneficiaries by having a legally binding Will registered with the DIFC Wills Service Centre (DIFC WSC). These Wills allow the non-Muslim shareholders to pass on their shares or any other assets in the UAE to the beneficiary of their choice. These Wills are written under the DIFC WSC’s rules which are modeled on the principles of English law. The Wills can either be registered at the offices of the DIFC WSC, through video conferencing with the DIFC WSC or at the offices of the RAK ICC.

7. Large Number of Registered Companies

There are more than 30,000 international business or offshore companies registered with the RAK ICC. These companies have shareholders from more than 160 countries. The strong reputation of the registry is attracting huge number of new company registrations as well as migration of offshore companies from other jurisdictions. RAK ICC is the largest offshore registry in the UAE and the MENA region. The registry has offices in Ras Al Khaimah, Dubai and Shanghai. The investors and shareholders are quickly finding out that the RAK ICC is a perfect source for them to enter the GCC, Middle East and African markets.

RAK ICC is strongly positioned to attract more international business and offshore companies due to the above reasons that make it stand out as a top offshore jurisdiction in the world.