A free zone, also known as a free trade zone, is an economic jurisdiction with its own rules and regulations exclusive to companies operating within. Free zone businesses in Dubai are subject to unique tax and ownership regulations to trade goods and/or services in the UAE.

The specific business activities undertaken by a business determine the type of free zone license that will be granted to it. The regulating authority in charge of granting licenses and conducting business within a free zone is called the free zone authority. Free zone companies are not subject to the same regulations as UAE mainland companies.

Free Zone License in Dubai

Benefits such as efficient banking facilities, business-friendly regulations, world-class infrastructure, access to the MENA market, etc. can all be availed through a free zone license in Dubai.

The fundamental parameters are the same for all free zones, although they cater to distinct areas of interest and vary widely in terms of company formation expenses, documentation requirements, etc. Undoubtedly, there isn’t a finer place for entrepreneurs looking to expand their businesses internationally.

Procedure to Obtain a Free Zone License in Dubai

To set up a business, entrepreneurs need to execute the following steps to obtain their free zone license in Dubai:

#1 Select your Business activities:

You are free to select from a variety of business activities in Dubai free zones but bear in mind that the cost and type of a free zone license in Dubai varies depending on the type and number of business activities you choose.

#2 Register your Trade name:

Free zone authorities in Dubai have stringent regulations in place when it comes to legal compliance, thus your business name must comply with the naming conventions.

#3 Apply for the License:

You must submit an application to the free zone authorities. The application must be accurately filled out so that the free zone authorities can move forward with your legal process.

#4 Submit the required Documents:

Even though obtaining a free zone license in Dubai is simple, you will still need to provide some more paperwork in addition to the correctly filled out application, like the shareholder’s passport copies and other identification documents. However, it is crucial to remember that each free zone has different requirements, so going through them before starting the procedure is necessary.

#5 Obtain your Dubai Free Zone License:

The final step is to obtain your free zone license in Dubai. Once you are issued your trade license, you are all set to establish your business!

#6 Open your Corporate Bank Account:

You can open your company’s corporate bank account(s) and initiate business activities.

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Benefits of Obtaining a Free Zone License in Dubai

  • Certain free zones entities are exempt from import and export duties
  • There are exemptions from income tax and personal tax
  • 100% foreign ownership of your business
  • Complete capital and profit return incentives are available to investors
  • Free zone enterprises are perfect for international investors seeking 100% foreign ownership
  • Hassle-free procedures for hiring employees
  • Foreign exchange restrictions do not exist in free zones
  • Perfect for small and medium-sized businesses and startup projects.
  • Excellent logistical benefits

Types of Dubai Free Zone Licenses

Commercial license:

A commercial license must be applied for by business entities that engage in trading activities such as import/export.

Industrial license:

Industrial license is granted to businesses involved in manufacturing, packaging, etc. Examples of industrial businesses within a free zone include companies undertaking manufacturing of carpets, mineral water bottling, uniforms, etc.

General trading license:

An investor may apply for a free zone license in Dubai with the import and export of goods being the primary operations. This license is known as a general trading license. Additionally, this license is also granted for activities associated with distribution and storage.

Professional license:

Professionals, service providers, artists, etc. need a professional license. Those who offer their skills as a service are eligible for a professional license. To provide their services in Dubai and the rest of the UAE, any person or company that uses intellectual capacities must first obtain a professional license.

Other types of licenses include:

  • Event management license
  • E-commerce license
  • Freelancer license

Check Out: Business Setup In IFZA Free Zone

Dubai Free Zone License cost

The price of a free zone license in Dubai varies depending on how many services you require, how big your facility is, how many staff members you have, and various other factors. One of the most economical ways to set up a company in Dubai is to establish it at Meydan Free Zone, especially if you’re looking for the cheapest free zone license in Dubai.