If there is a major upper hand that UAE free zones have over mainland, it’s the fact that no local sponsor is required to start a business. That means there is no splitting of 51% shares hence 100% foreign ownership is allowed. The government of UAE has set up multiple free zones across the country so business can take advantage of tax-free statuses and low trade barriers where you can manufacture, import, export and produce goods without paying any customs duty.

Free zones are usually located next to airports, sea ports and national borders to maximize ease of trading. Check out this list of free zones to see which one best suits your business.

Why set up a business in UAE Free zone?

Free zones provide many benefits for investors. It is completely under the possession of foreign investors. There is also a chief benefit in a free zone: 100% repatriation of capital and profit. It is utterly free from all taxes. There is no restriction on transferring funds. It is also under the law of free zone authorities. There are meager freight charges.

Benefits of Business Setup in UAE Free Zones

  • 100% foreign ownership
  • Zero income taxes
  • Free transfer of funds and easy bank set ups
  • Liberal government policies and legal framework
  • 3-year UAE residence visa
  • Easy business set up and license registration
  • Free-hold offices, ready-made factories and warehouses
  • Low trade barriers
  • Exemption from all import export duties
  • Strategic locations for ease of trade

Types of Company Formation in UAE Free Zone

  • Branch of foreign or local business
  • Free Zone Establishment with a single shareholder (FZE)
  • Free Zone Company between 2 to 5 shareholders (FZC)

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Types of Licenses in UAE Free zone

General Trading License – allows holder to trade all products permitted under the license

Commercial License – can perform industrial, commercial and consulting activities in a given time period

Service License – can perform services like consulting, accounts, law firms etc

Industrial License – can import raw materials, manufacturing goods, and export products

Warehousing License – can use warehouse facilities for distribution, packaging and storing of goods

Manufacturing License – license allows manufacturing of products

List of Free Zones in UAE

Business setup in UAE is a wonderful opportunity for traders. Free zones have now become the first priority for all investors. Setting up business in the UAE especially in free zones paves the ways of trade at a large scale. It is useful to enhance the exposure of business on an international level. Free zone company incorporation is under the government of UAE which is liable to issue free zone licenses for foreigners.

Dubai Free Zone

Dubai, the heart of UAE, is known to be a popular business hub for foreign owners and investors

Abu Dhabi Free Zone

Stretching around 80% of the whole country, Abu Dhabi is the proud capital of UAE

Sharjah Free Zone

Known to be one of the most affordable emirates for living and one of the most vibrant cities

Ajman Free Zone

Ajman Free Zone is the best choice for businesses that wants to access the western and eastern markets

Umm-ul-Quwain Free Zone

Umm Al Quwain Free Zone is an ideal location for start-ups, young entrepreneurs and trading businesses

Ras-al-Khaimah Free Zone

Ras-al-Khaimah has almost more than 30 Free Zones, while some are under construction

Fujairah Free Zone

Fujairah Free Zone is famous for its access to all the Arabian Gulf Ports

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