Cost of Setting Up a Company in Dubai

Cost of Setting Up a Company in Dubai

The cost of Setting Up a Company in Dubai depends on the type of business, its size, and the chosen location within the emirate. The expenses generally include government fees, licensing, office space rental, visa processing for employees, and any additional services required, such as legal and consulting fees. Not all free zones in Dubai are governed by the government; many operate independently. Dubai provides several free zones, each with its own cost structures and advantages.

Businesses operating within these zones can benefit from tax exemptions and retain full ownership rights, both in the Mainland and within the free zones. These costs can vary significantly, making it essential for entrepreneurs to conduct thorough research and financial planning before establishing a company in Dubai. Shuraa Business Setup will help you to know the exact cost of setting up a company in Dubai.  

Exploring Company Formation in Dubai: Common Queries 

Here are some questions that may arise regarding company formation in Dubai: 

  • Choosing the Right Location: Where is the ideal place to establish a company in Dubai?
  • Financial Planning: How can I calculate the funds needed to set up a business in Dubai?
  • Cost-Effective Business Options: Is there a method for creating a budget-friendly business in Dubai?
  • Affordable Free Zones: Which Dubai free zone offers the most economical business options?
  • Payment Procedures: Do I need to pay the Dubai trade license fee upfront?
  • Accessible Business Services: Are there reasonably priced business solution providers or affordable business setup services in the UAE?
  • LLC Formation Expenses: What is the expense of forming a Limited Liability Company (LLC) in Dubai?
  • Government Fees: What are the various charges imposed by the Dubai government for commencing a business

Expert Insights on Dubai Company Registration: 

The cost of registering a Dubai company fluctuates due to changing regulations. Fixed rates for approvals and documentation are rare, making it essential to consult knowledgeable and affordable business setup services in Dubai. Experienced corporate advisors assist entrepreneurs by explaining initial charges, keeping them updated on price fluctuations and government service costs, and offering advice to minimise unnecessary expenses. 

Moreover, the setup cost varies based on factors such as the type of business activity, chosen jurisdiction, required approvals, and certifications. Shuraa Business Setup has compiled a comprehensive list of the latest standard costs for setting up a business in Dubai to simplify the process. These prices are categorised as Mainland, Free Zone, and Offshore options.  

Services Covered in the Cost of Setting Up a Company in Dubai- LLC Business 

Below are the services Covered in the Cost of Setting Up a Company in Dubai- LLC Business 

Initial Approval from DED 

The Department of Economic Development (DED) grants initial approvals for launching business operations. A nominal fee allows you to initiate procedures for up to six months, providing ample time to complete your other required documents. This one-time expense is part of the startup costs for businesses in Dubai.

Trade Name Approval 

The trade name is essentially the name you’ll use to operate your company. In some instances, the cost might vary depending on the name you select. Trade name approval includes reservation fees, commercial name fees, foreign company name fees, and similar charges. It could also vary based on your specific requirements. Approving a trade name constitutes a one-time expenditure. 

Office Rental for LLC 

Securing an office space for a mainland business setup in Dubai is obligatory, enabling authorities to validate the legitimacy of companies. This arrangement allows officials to inspect, oversee operations, and ensure your company complies with immigration laws. Renting an office space can be an annual or term-based expense.

Memorandum of Association (MoA) Attestation 

The attestation of an LLC’s Memorandum of Association (MoA) takes place among the company’s partners or shareholders. The attestation cost may vary based on the share capital, but it remains a one-time expenditure. 

Drafting the LLC Contract in Arabic and English 

The contract for an LLC established in Dubai is created with the mutual agreement of the partners. The contract must be prepared in both Arabic and English to ensure clear understanding among all shareholders. Apart from drafting the contract, there might be additional costs for translation. This expense is also incurred only once. 

Department of Economic Development Fees (DED Fee) 

The Ministry of Economy in each Emirate imposes a nominal one-time fee for registering LLCs. However, additional annual prices vary from one business to another.

Mainland Trade License Fee (Included in the DED Fee) 

Obtaining a trade license is a one-time cost, with the specific amount varying based on the nature of the business activity. Occasionally, a security deposit might be necessary during the trade license application process. Licenses and related activities are subject to regular monitoring by relevant departments, which could involve occasional additional costs. 

Commercial License Fee (Tejari) 

The annual payment of the commercial license fee, commonly known as Tejari, is mandatory for engaging in commercial activities. 

Dubai Chamber of Commerce Fee 

The Dubai Chamber of Commerce fee is an annual obligation. The specified amount applies to general trading companies. However, for industrial or manufacturing companies, the cost may vary. 

Commercial Services Improvement Fee 

This is an annual payment made to support improvements carried out by government departments. 

Administrative Services Fee 

An administrative fee is imposed for the paperwork handled by the department; it is a singular cost. 

Other Significant Expenses: 

  • One-time fee for general trading company formation 
  • One-time fee for a contracting license 
  • Economic department charges for real estate brokers’ company 
  • The government applies a small percentage based on the premises rented. For offices or shops, it’s 5%, and for warehouses, it’s 20%. 
  • Additional charges may be imposed based on the specific nature of the business setup. 

Cost of Setting Up a Company in Dubai 

Establishing a company in the UAE’s free zones is subject to distinct rules and regulations, leading to varying procedures and charges. While aspects like local sponsorship, rental costs, and visa fees remain consistent, other elements such as intelligent desk facilities, office units, warehouses, license fees, registration fees, shared capital requirements, visa fees, and bank guarantees can differ based on the chosen free zone area. 

Below are the costs for three popular Dubai free zones, as per Shuraa experts:

International Free Zone Authority (IFZA) 

  • AED 21,900* (includes provision for one investor visa) 
  • AED 12,900* (without a visa) 

Note: These prices may vary depending on the company type, such as Free Zone Establishment (FZE) or branch office. 

Services Covered in the Expenses of Free Zone Business Setup in Dubai 

Below are the Services Covered in the Expenses of Free Zone Business Setup in Dubai 

  1. Free Zone Company Registration Fee 

This fee, payable to the free zone authority during the initial business registration, is a one-time payment. The cost varies based on the type of company, whether it’s an FZE or a branch office. 

  1. Free Zone License Fee (Included in Company Registration)

This annual fee is imposed on companies operating within a free zone jurisdiction. The licensing fee is relevant for trading, services, and industrial firms. The licensing process is facilitated by the free zone authority of a specific jurisdiction, streamlining the procedure into a single-window operation. 

  1. Rental Cost (Included in Company Registration)

The office rental expense in Dubai free zones is one of the initial fees in the overall free zone business setup cost. Opting for this option grants you complete ownership of assets and liabilities within the company. Renting office space in a free zone provides convenience and control and offers flexibility in rental durations, ranging from monthly to yearly to multi-year leases.

The most economical choice for setting up a company in a free zone depends on the jurisdiction and the available rental options. Additionally, the rented space dictates the number of visas obtainable and the range of business activities your company can engage in. 

Rental Options in Most Free Zone Business Setups: 

Below are the Rental Options in Most Free Zone Business Setups: 

  • Smart Desk: 

The most budget-friendly choice for initiating a free zone business setup, the intelligent desk service provides a dedicated workspace for individuals. Ideal for freelancers and small businesses. 

  • Office Units: 

These are compact, self-contained office spaces tailored for small businesses. The cost of an office unit in a free zone jurisdiction varies based on the selected area.

  • Permanent Office/Warehouses: 

A permanent office offers a fully equipped workspace, albeit at a higher cost than an intelligent desk or office unit. Similarly, free zone warehouses provide ample storage space. The expenses correlate with the facilities provided. 

  • Share Capital Requirements: 

Establishing a free zone company necessitates an investment from shareholders or the sole proprietor. Predefining the share capital simplifies the process, with the amount divided among shareholders or invested collectively in the company. Most UAE free zones impose a minimum share capital requirement for company initiation. 

  • Free Zone Visa Fee: 

Free zone companies have limited employment visa allocations based on the acquired office space. Visa fees are applicable annually and require renewal. Expenses for new employees outside the UAE include residency stamps, medical fitness certificates, and ID cards. Conversely, fees for employees already within the country cover residency stamps, medical fitness certificates, ID cards, and visa issuance without leaving the UAE. 

  • Registered Agent Fee: 

Unlike LLCs, free zones necessitate a local agent in the UAE to oversee all governmental procedures. The registered agent incurs a fee for their services, constituting an initial cost that recurs during license renewals.  

Key Expenses in Free Zone Business Setup: 

Depending on your selected free zone, there are several additional expenses to consider: 

  • Name Approval Charges 
  • Notarisation Charges 
  • Premium Bank Account in Dubai 
  • Medical Check 
  • Police Clearance 
  • Emirates ID Card 

Commence Your Business Journey with Shuraa Business Setup 

Our team of business setup experts is here to assist you in establishing your business swiftly and efficiently, whether in Dubai or any other part of the UAE. While our services come with a charge, the nominal fee is a worthwhile investment, saving you valuable time, effort, and, most importantly, money! 

For detailed information about Dubai business setup costs and low-cost business setup options in Dubai or any other Emirate, contact Shuraa. We guarantee you the best prices available in the market.


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