How to license a business in theUAE
A license is the mandatory government-issued document that authorizes a business tocarry out permitted activities both within the UAE and abroad.
The activities that businesses can perform in the UAE are restricted to those listed in the entity’s license issued by the Economic Department in the relevant emirate. To start your business sucessfuly, you should choose the most appropriate type of license depending on the contemplated business activities. Knowing procedures of obtaining the license and pecularities of its renewal and cost is also very important. SORP provides a “turnkey” solution for incorporating your business in the UAE and offers a comprehensive range of services supporting your business needs in the country.
Choose the target for your contemplatedbusiness activity for incorporation in the UAE
Business license is a main statutory document which reflects the date of incorporation and expiry, listed permitted business activities, names of the owner and the manager.
Import, export, re-export. Wholesaleand retail. Online commerce
Trading business success in the UAE is boosted by minimal taxation, great geographical location and high purchasing power of the population.
Management consulting, servicesprovided to the public, restaurants
Get all the advantages and benefits of doing business in the most solvent market in the world, which values the quality of great services .
Investment management, financialconsulting, lending and borrowing
Tax free activity in the UAE and abroad with the ability to receive interest and commissions, securities and finances, capital and asset management.
Real Estate BusinessLicensing
Real estate agencies, developers,facilities management and estate consulting
Significant infrastructure spending and growth of the construction sector fuels increased demand for the services of professional market players.
Engineering works, servicing thefacilities, project management and design
The multitude of construction projects presents opportunities for engineering contractors in project delivery, building operations, and maintenance.
Logistics andTransportation Licensing
Sea, land and air transportation,freight brokers as well as cargo warehousing
Growth of the country's logistics market exposes great development potential. The tax free regime boosts business profitability locally and abroad.
Tourism and HospitalityLicensing
Business activity as a touristagency, tourist operator company and consultancy.
The huge growth potential of tourism and the hospitality sector in the UAE, along with government support, underpins business profitability.
Construction Works andServices Licensing
Buildings and infrastructureconstruction, design and performing of finishing works.
Construction flourishes all over the country. High consumer demand fuels an orders pipeline for construction, design, and landscaping contractors.
Pre-schools, schools and highereducation institutions, sport centers and learning courses.
The sector is one of the top priorities for government support in the UAE. A growing demand for quality services provides profitability for business.
Free Economic Zones foster an attractive environment for those businesses focused only on international operations (i.e. outside of the UAE) and/or the economic activity within a free zone. The best alternative is to incorporate a company locally ( mainland of the UAE) to unlock unlimited investment benefits for conducting a true exterritorial business in the UAE and in any other destination abroad.
100% foreign ownership is now available for mainland companies according to a resolution by the UAE Cabinet of Ministers
On June 1, 2021, amendments to the Commercial Companies Law of 2015 came into force. According to the new regulations, a number of commercial activities that previously required the appointment of a local partner for LLCs are now completely exempted from such obligations for the main type of activity, thereby greatly increasing the advantages of starting a mainland business. Incorporating a mainland company, as opposed to a Free Zone company, generates greater trust in the eyes of counterparties and banks. This opens up unlimited opportunities for the investor both in the UAE and abroad.
The stages of business setup in the UAE
Preliminary due dilligence
Success depends on analyzing the competitive environment and adapting your business strategy accordingly. What works in other countries does not necessarily work well in the UAE and vice-versa
Choosing the most appropriate form of incorporation
Where you incorporate is important and will be guided by the intended theater of operations (local / international). Different jurisdictions provide varying levels of confidence for banks as well as prestige and credibility for your business
Understanding licensing procedures
A business license should match the intended business activity as much as possible. Additional licensing requirements of local authorities should also be allowed for
Choosing a type of legal entity
Depending on the type of license and the jurisdiction, the law dictates what legal entity and organizational structure is permitted, along with foreign & local ownership regulations
Obtaining a license and registering
A license can be obtained after meeting local authority requirements (if any), confirmation of a valid business address and payment of the cost of the license and registration fees
Business support and license renewal
The final stage is choosing the right management consulting company that will provide tailor-made administrative and legal support for business operations. It should also renew your license and other permissions in a timely manner
SORP expert solutions for incorporatingbusinesses in the UAE
Define a business model
SORP will advise on a right typeof a license and on appropriate legal entity for your business
Incorporating and licensing
SORP’s expertise in the localcorporate industry guarantees a support with utmost diligence.
Local Partner or Agent
Nominee service from SORPInvestment LLC with a waiver in the Dubai court
Business address in Dubai
SORP Business Center providesclients with an office lease for the purpose of licensing and doing business with Ejari / Estidama, flexi-desks and virtual office.
Opening bank accounts
SORP has a close cooperationwith leading banks in UAE, providing clients with a full range of support to ease compliance and passing all KYC procedures.
SORP provides legal and taxconsulting, accounting as well as administration services to ensure that clients are supported with all their business and statutory needs.
What UAE law requires for incorporated and licensed businesses
License validity period
Licenses must be renewed annually accompanied by a full year audited financial report, renewed premises lease agreement, and fulfillment of any other requirements of regulators.
Licensing and renewal is the mechanism whereby the state exercises a form of control over businesses and represents a hidden tax. Mandatory annual renewal payment is required to remain in business.
Renewals are subject to the very same approvals as are required when submitting the initial application. This procedure requires permission from the relevant authorities, with a renewed premises lease contract and agent contract to be presented.
SORP’s license renewal services
Local partneror agent
SORP will provide a nominalUAE partner service and renew the previously conducted agreements and current contracts.
Annual office lease atSORP Business Center
SORP will allow you to save moneyeach year by providing a lease of minimal required office space at its own SORP Business Center.
Professional administrativesupport for businesses
SORP provides renewal servicesfor licenses, permissions and other statutory documents in the UAE, including complicated cases.
Benefits and requirements for incorporatingyour international business in the UAE
Protection from tax information exchange
Having a UAE tax domicile will exclude a business entity from automatic tax information exchange under the CRS mechanism.
Confirmation of economic presence
Justification is required for conducting operations from within the UAE as proof of the legitimacy of tax optimizations abroad.
Tax planning opportunities
UAE legislation provides an environment free from controls on the movement of capital - an important prerequisite for conducting international business, for tax optimization, and free cash settlements.
SORP services for international business
Tax residencyin the UAE
All UAE residents are protectedfrom an automatic exchange of tax information when doing banking transactions.
International tax planningand optimization
Tailor - made solutions forenhancing tax optimization for international business through the UAE legislation.
Confirmation of economicpresence
Proof of the economic presencein the UAE through the onshore management (decision) center and tax residency.
The global trend towards increased control over businesses leaves fewer legal methods to minimize the tax burden, optimize cash flows and allocate funds to bank accounts. However, incorporating a local (mainland) company in the UAE provides business people with a powerful set of tools for solving such problems. They include protection from automatic exchange of tax information, of information on bank accounts and other assets, under the provisions of the CRS mechanism.
SORP provides a full range of services for abusiness setup and management in the UAE
SORP offers comprehensive support for acquired companies and their shareholders: from licensing, maintaining Bank accounts to obtaining the status of a tax resident of the country
Your requirements are unique. That is why we treat every business individually to tailor the right services to achieve your priorities.
15 years of successful work
We have helped thousands of clients acquire, build and develop businesses in the UAE
Assistance in choosing a bank that is suitable for your purposes, support with bank accounts opening and passing KYC procedures (know your customer).
License your businessas quickly as possible
SORP Group experts will help you define appropriate business activities and decide on the ideal place of incorporation and type of a legal vehicle.
Make your first step towards setting up your business in the UAE.