The Simplest Steps to Get a Business License in Dubai

Business Setup In UAE

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Business License in Dubai

Obtaining a business license in Dubai, UAE, involves several procedures and considerations.

Firstly, you’ll need to define your business activity, as this will determine the type of business license you will need. Secondly, you will need to address the aspect of your business’s legal structure. Dubai offers various types of business structures, including Sole proprietorship, Limited Liability Company (LLC), partnership, ETC.

In this article, we will walk you through the simplest steps to getting a business license in Dubai, UAE.

Understanding the Basics of Business Setup in Dubai:

Firstly, let’s discuss the basics of starting a company in Dubai. The first step to establishing any company in Dubai, UAE is to get a business license. This license is issued either by the Dubai Department of Economy and Tourism (DET), formerly known as the Department of Economic Development (DED), or one of the many freezone authorities in Dubai.

The type of business license you choose will depend on your business activity, as different licenses cater to specific business sectors.

Types of Business Licenses in Dubai, UAE:

Let’s take an example: you want to setup an E-commerce company; your activity is mainly to sell products using online platforms such as your website, social media, and e-commerce portals like Amazon and Noon, among others. In this case, you’ll need a business license that covers e-commerce activities.

Dubai offers different business licenses, with the 4 main types being:

Commercial License: If you plan to engage in a business that offers trading, retail, or wholesale activities, a commercial license in Dubai is the best option.

Check this article on how to obtain a commercial license in Dubai.

Professional License: This license is ideal if you plan to offer professional services such as consultancy, legal, or accounting services to other companies or individuals. 

Get more details on getting a professional license in Dubai.

Industrial License: You’ll need an industrial license in Dubai if you opt to manufacture or carry any industrial-related activity.

Tourism License: To offer hotel management, travel, tourism, flight reservation, and hospitality management services.

Choosing Your Business Location:

After deciding what type of company you want to operate in Dubai, UAE, your next decision will be to choose where to set up your company in Dubai.

Company formation in Dubai allows investors to setup a 100% foreign-owned business across the UAE. But deciding whether to set up in a free zone or Dubai mainland will depend on other factors as each has pros and cons.

Mainland: Business setup in Dubai mainland allows you to operate anywhere across the UAE borders without restrictions. However, depending on your business activity, you may need a local sponsor ( UAE national ) or partner.

Freezone: Dubai has over 20+ freezone authorities, with each designed to handle a specific sector(s). Business setup in Dubai freezone allows foreign investors to fully own their companies with no restriction to repatriate capital and profits and a 0% rate on customs duties and more. 

However, you will be restricted to operating your business only within the freezone jurisdiction.

Steps to Getting a Business License in Dubai:

The process for obtaining a business license in Dubai may vary based on your business activity, chosen location, and other factors. Generally, the steps involve:

  • Defining your business structure and activity.
  • Choosing a unique and meaningful trade name for your business.
  • Compiling all required documents and apply for initial approval from the relevant authorities ( DET or Freezone Authority).
  • Obtaining an office space in Dubai as per your business’s requirements.
  • Paying the necessary fees to obtain your business license.
  • Applying for visas for yourself and your employees.
  • Opening a business bank account to manage your financial transactions.

Check this article out on: How To Open a Business Bank Account In UAE

Documents You’ll Need to Setup a Company in Dubai:

  • A business plan stating your business goals and objectives
  • Passport copies of the business owner/partners
  • Visa or EID copy if you’re a UAE resident
  • No Objection Certificate (NOC) if you’re employed in the UAE and wish to start a business.
  • Memorandum of Association (MOA)if your company involves multiple shareholders.

Final Thoughts:

Starting your own company in Dubai can be a thrilling yet nerve-racking process for starters. I recommend consulting with an expert in business setup in Dubai and the UAE. 

For more details, you can book a free consultation with one of our experts in Dubai, who will guide you every step of the way to set up your company in Dubai, UAE.

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