According to new research, UK-based business owners have been expanding their businesses to the UAE increasingly. And why not? Dubai has ample resources to help UK entrepreneurs tap into new markets. More specifically, Dubai and its associated free zones are being seen as promising for starting a business in Dubai as a foreigner.
DMCC, one of the more known free zones in Dubai, has played a crucial role in developing UAE-UK trade relations. In March 2022, the free zone had profitable opportunities for UK entrepreneurs in Dubai, as shown during its Made For Trade Live Roadshow. In fact, opportunities in DMCC attracted a record-breaking 2,485 new businesses in 2021, bringing the total to over 20,000 companies.
Dubai is an incubator for entrepreneurship and home to a dynamic, resilient, and growing cultural scene. No wonder it is one of the most popular locations for UK entrepreneurs to launch their businesses.
So if starting a business in Dubai as a foreigner is on your mind, keep reading further.
What Are the Benefits of Starting a Business in Dubai?
UK-UAE ties are deepening as they engage in new projects together. Following are some benefits UK entrepreneurs may reap in Dubai:
- With everything digitised and cooperative administration, starting a business in Dubai as a foreigner involves almost no paperwork.
- The recent UAE-UK free trade agreement negotiations are likely to boost future business activities. Moreover, lower trade barriers, a more secure regulatory environment and the UAE’s need to import certain skills make Dubai a promising location to start your business as a foreigner.
- The UAE is one of the largest domestic markets and the third-largest re-export market. Hence, Dubai can provide the most productive market access for UK manufacturers and exporters.
- The UAE government has recently created Fintech regulatory sandboxes and technology-specific government investment funds for foreign entrepreneurs.
- Once you have all the pertinent documents, obtaining a visa in Dubai is easier. Moreover, the new visa rules make the foreign national-dominated job market more adaptable.
- Dubai’s cutting-edge infrastructure, tremendous public transportation system, world-class telecommunication, and top-notch internet facilities fascinate several UK entrepreneurs.
- The UAE excels globally in the business skills of its employees. In fact, its talent pool is highly competent in various fields like management, leadership and operations.
- Dubai absolves all types of taxes. These include income, business and personal taxes. But, some companies may need to pay a 5% VAT on certain business activities.
- Unlike most nations, even if you’re starting a business in Dubai as a foreigner, you can have 100% ownership of your company.
- Thanks to its strategic location, Dubai links manufacturers, producers and suppliers from all over the world. The ports serve for outstanding connectivity.
- Businesses in the Dubai mainland and free zones are not compelled to give a part of their capital invested and profits earned as taxes to the UAE government.
What Documents Do You Require to Start a Business in Dubai as a Foreigner?
Being a foreigner setting up their business in Dubai, ensure you have all the necessary documents. This simplifies the business setup process. Some of the documents you will need to submit are as follows:
- Copies of passports and visas
- Two passport-size photographs
- Entry visa and stamp pages
The type and number of documents depend on the business activity, company structure and location. Our experts can provide you with a comprehensive list of the documents required for your business.
How to Start a Business in Dubai as a Foreigner?
As a foreigner, you must go through various steps to launch a business in Dubai. The following steps can help you comprehend it better:
1. Select a Business Activity
As a foreigner, Dubai is uncharted waters for you. So, learn about the UAE’s culture and the local consumer. Then, localise your business idea, vision, and goals.
Also, before you enter the new market, research the competition. A wide variety of business activities are permitted in Dubai’s mainland and free zones. Accordingly, choose a business activity.
2. Decide on Your Company’s Name
Choosing a name for your business is a big decision. It’s the first thing your prospective clients will remember about your company. So, your company name should be easy to recognise and remember. Moreover, a legally safe name will keep you away from legal troubles. Accordingly, choose a name and register it with the relevant authorities.
3. Choose a Company Structure
Your business will operate more effectively if it has an appropriate company structure. So, choose a suitable company structure for your business. The company structure could be a sole proprietorship, a Limited Liability Company (LLC) or a branch office.
4. Apply for the Licence
Your business needs to have a valid trade licence in Dubai. Having a trade licence for your company makes it simpler to register a corporate bank account. Submit the required paperwork and licence money to apply for a business licence.
Many types of business licences are allowed for UK business owners in Dubai. Moreover, you might need to apply for extra permits based on your line of work. Consultancy professionals can assist you in getting the licence and approvals necessary for your business.
5. Choose Your Business Location
Every location in Dubai has unique qualities and provides significant advantages. Considering this, decide on a business location in Dubai. You can choose from the Dubai mainland or one of the free zones.
Consider the size of your personnel, the technologies required, and your budget when deciding on a physical office. Additionally, you will have to decide whether to rent or lease.
6. Get Your Trade Licence
Once all the stages have been successfully completed, you can get your trade licence.
An expert consultancy can help expedite the business setup process for you. This could include naming rules, visa eligibility rules, corporate licences, bank accounts and fees.
What Is the Cost of Starting a Business in Dubai?
Various aspects of starting a business in Dubai as a foreigner cost differently. For instance, your business activities, licence type, promotional campaigns, additional approvals, and more. So, coming up with an accurate cost of starting a business in Dubai is tricky. Nonetheless, it may take around 18,000 AED to set up a business in Dubai as a foreigner.
Your business’s specific costs can be determined with the assistance of experts from the Shuraa UK branch. They will ensure that you don’t overspend.
Start Your Business in Dubai With Shuraa
Shuraa UK branch can deliver all the resources you need for a successful business setup. If your business has specific requirements, we can also create custom-made setup solutions. All you need to do is get in touch with us!