Which is the Cheapest Free Zone in the UAE?

Fortune 500 companies and other massive multinational corporations have established offices in the UAE, which ranks 16th globally in the Ease of Doing Business Index. This trend extends to independent business owners and small to medium-sized enterprises. However, determining the most cost-effective UAE-free zone is essential.

The UAE’s Free Zones have been pivotal in fostering a business-friendly environment. With over 50 free zones in the United Arab Emirates, each with its guidelines and advantages, exploring the Cheapest Free Zone in the UAE. Let’s delve into the most economical free zones in the UAE and evaluate what they offer to help you identify the optimal free zone for your business. 

Exploring Free Zones in the UAE

Free zones represent specialised regions within the UAE established to attract foreign investors, stimulate economic expansion, and enhance economic diversification. Enterprises operating within these zones benefit from various incentives, including full foreign ownership rights, tax exemptions, and streamlined regulatory processes. 

Benefits of Establishing a Business in a Free Zone

Opting for a UAE-free zone for your business yields numerous advantages: 

  • Full Ownership Rights: Enjoy the significant benefit of complete business ownership, a privilege typically restricted in mainland UAE. 
  • Tax Exemptions: Most free zones provide tax exemptions for a designated period, enabling you to plough back profits into your business for expansion. 
  • Duty-Free Import/Export: Eliminate the hassle of import and export duties within the free zone, facilitating smoother international trade operations. 
  • Streamlined Company Formation: Setting up a business in a free zone is characterised by simplified procedures, often achievable within a short timeframe. 
  • Modern Infrastructure: Many free zones boast state-of-the-art facilities and infrastructure catering to diverse business needs. 

Top 7 Cheapest Free Zone in the UAE

Below is a compilation of the Cheapest Free Zone in the UAE, excluding DIFC. 

1. International Free Zone Authority (IFZA)

IFZA has emerged as a prominent hub for company registration in the UAE, gaining significant traction and popularity. With a robust platform and an extensive global network of over 800 partners, IFZA is preferred. Notably, IFZA offers the advantage of securing the most affordable license available in the UAE. The benefits of establishing a business in IFZA are manifold.

Firstly, investors are presented with various packages to suit their specific needs. Moreover, investors are not obligated to furnish an annual audit report, streamlining administrative requirements. Additionally, IFZA serves as a thriving ecosystem for IT and Tech companies, further enhancing its appeal as a business destination. 

Read More: IFZA company formation in Dubai

2. Dubai Silicon Oasis (DSO)

Dubai Silicon Oasis (DSO) is the pinnacle of advanced development and technology in Dubai, offering a dynamic free zone environment where workers can access employment opportunities and housing amenities. Numerous tech giants, telecommunications firms, and other enterprises thrive within Dubai Silicon Oasis, making it a diverse business hub beyond its primary focus on technology. 

The benefits of establishing a business in Dubai Silicon Oasis are compelling. Firstly, enterprises enjoy certain tax exemptions, including income, corporate, and import/export taxes, enhancing financial advantages.

Additionally, its strategic location near Jebel Ali Port, Port Rashid, and Dubai International Airport facilitates seamless logistics and connectivity for businesses engaged in international trade. Furthermore, modern IT infrastructure and a Tier 3 data centre underscore DSO’s commitment to fostering innovation and efficiency for companies operating within its ecosystem. 

3. Ras Al Khaimah Free Zone (RAKEZ)

Ras Al Khaimah Free Zone (RAKEZ) is known for its low setup costs and affordable business packages. RAK free zone offers diverse business sectors, including manufacturing, trading, and consulting, making it a desirable location for many corporations. Entrepreneurs can enjoy tax exemptions, 100% foreign ownership, and excellent infrastructure facilities, all at a reasonable cost. 

Read More: Business Setup in Ras Al Khaimah

4. Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA)

The UAE’s pioneering free zone provides the most cost-effective conditions for launching a business and ranks among the most extensive free zones globally. JAFZA is the premier choice for logistics, commodity trading, and shipping companies seeking to operate within the UAE. With six distinct types of business licenses available, JAFZA caters to a wide range of entrepreneurial aspirations. Whether your venture entails manufacturing, trading, development, or service provision, JAFZA offers the ideal platform to kickstart your business. 

5. Dubai Media City (DMC) 

Dubai Media City stands as the premier destination for launching a media company. Boasting top-notch infrastructure, it functions as a global media hub, facilitating seamless business operations within and beyond Dubai.

Moreover, DMC provides media and creative enterprises with the UAE’s most economical business license options. Rapidly evolving into a prominent centre for international media, DMC emerges as one of the UAE’s finest and most cost-effective free zones. It serves as the headquarters for various businesses, including event planning, advertising, news media, and numerous others. 

6. Sharjah Media City (SHAMS)

Sharjah Media City, commonly called SHAMS, provides the UAE’s most budget-friendly free zone license, with business setup packages starting as low as AED 5,750. This package includes a professional media license and one of the 13 listed activities.

Ideal for first-time business owners, UAE residents, and established company proprietors, the media license offered by SHAMS does not include any visas. Consequently, SHAMS facilitates the UAE’s most economical company formation option, catering to creative businesses of all scales. 

7. Ajman Media City

Ajman Media City is an up-and-coming free zone specifically tailored to serve the media and creative sectors. Its competitive pricing makes it appealing for budding media startups and established businesses. With various licensing options available, the free zone empowers enterprises to select the most suitable option based on their financial circumstances and requirements. 

Why opt to establish your business in a free zone? 

Utilising the free zones in the UAE offers a multitude of advantages for both startup companies and business owners, such as: 

  1. Unrestricted Capital and Profit Repatriation: Free Zones in the UAE allow you to repatriate all capital or profits from your business operations to your preferred location.
  2. Tax Exemption: Businesses operating within the free zones of Dubai are exempt from personal income or capital gains taxes.
  3. Expedited Company Formation: Free zones enable swift registration of your business and issuance of a trade license, often within just five days.
  4. Sector-Specific Benefits: The UAE boasts various free zones with industry-specific infrastructure support tailored to your business sector.

In the UAE, free zones come in different types: media, offshore, economic, and free trade. Economic free zones typically offer the most cost-effective options for businesses. 

Cost of Cheapest Free Zone in the UAE  

Investors seeking to establish a business in the UAE can explore a range of low-cost business license packages offered by its numerous free zones. With accessible company registration fees, individuals across the UAE can effortlessly set up a free zone company. The cost to the Cheapest Free Zone in the UAE to initiate a business in a free zone typically ranges from 12,500 to 30,000 AED. 

Get the cheapest free zone with Shuraa Business Setup 

Through Shuraa Business Setup, you can conveniently compare and pinpoint Dubai’s most cost-effective free zone options. Their services aid in navigating the diverse jurisdictions and regulations governing specific free zones, ensuring informed decision-making. By leveraging the expertise of their professionals, you can avoid errors throughout the process.

Selecting the optimal free zone environment is paramount for maximising benefits and fostering rapid business expansion. Trust Shuraa Business Setup to guide you towards implementing your business idea in the ideal setting for success. 


Q1. Why Choose a Free Zone in the UAE? 

Free zones in the UAE present advantageous business conditions, featuring tax benefits and simplified regulations, making them highly appealing for entrepreneurs aiming to enter the lucrative UAE market. 

Q2. How do you select the perfect free zone for your company? 

Choosing the correct free zone hinges on your business type, budget constraints, and location preferences. Conduct thorough research on available options, considering setup expenses, permissible business activities, and proximity to potential clientele. 

 Q3. Are there any restrictions on business activities in UAE-free zones? 

Although certain free zones cater to specific industries, the UAE offers various free zones spanning multiple sectors. It’s crucial to ensure that your chosen free zone aligns with the nature of your business activity. 


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