The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a renowned global business hub and an attractive destination for entrepreneurs looking to set up their businesses. The country offers several free zones providing ample opportunities for businesses to start and grow. Choosing the right free zone for your company is one of the most important factors. With so many options available, it can take time to figure out where to start.
To help you out, let’s explore some of the top free zones in the UAE for setting up a regional start-up.
Why Choose A Free Zone To Set Up Your Business In Dubai?
As an entrepreneur or a start-up, establishing a company in UAE-free zones is an excellent place to start. UAE free zone jurisdictions offer lucrative deals, world-class infrastructure, a luxurious lifestyle, and simple business setup models.
There are several benefits to setting up a business in UAE free zone areas including:
- 100% foreign ownership
- No personal, income, or corporate taxes
- Full repatriation of capital and profits
- Strategic location-boosting opportunities
- Simple and quick setup process
- World-class infrastructure
- Exemption from all import and export duties
Through 100% business ownership, free trade zones in the UAE assist the government in promoting international businesses in the region. Free zones are intended to reduce many complexities associated with establishing a business in the country.
Top Freezones For Businesses To Consider in The UAE
Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC)
DIFC is a strategic onshore financial centre located between the country’s east and west, providing a secure and effective platform for businesses and financial institutions to enter and exit the region’s emerging markets.
Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) is the region’s leading financial hub, calling all entrepreneurs looking to establish a company in the Fintech sector. A trade license in Dubai can be obtained by businesses to conduct a variety of non-financial and financial service activities. Some business areas within DIFC include banking, professional services, insurance, wealth management, and access to capital markets.
The quality and scope of the independent regulation provided by the DIFC, the common law framework, the supportive infrastructure, and the tax-friendly regime make it the ideal base from which to capitalize on the rapidly expanding demand for business and financial services in the area.
Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM)
The ADGM is one of the UAE’s two international financial centres. It was founded in 2015 and has quickly risen through the ranks to become one of the world’s top 25 financial centres. ADGM’s innovative SPV regime, fintech initiatives, and the release of the region’s first crypto-asset regulatory framework all contributed to its success.
- Friendly and transparent processes.
- A fully digital application process.
- Assistance with all visas and government-related services to businesses.
International entities in ADGM operate within a legal framework they are familiar with and trust. Many local and regional businesses find it easier to establish relationships and enter contracts with partners who understand the playing field.
Dubai Multi Commodities Centre Free Zone (DMCC)
Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC) is the world’s number 1 free zone and center of global commodities trading in the UAE. DMCC Dubai is the region’s leading free zone, offering businesses a thriving market space. With over 21,000+ registered members as of 2022, it offers a vibrant community and great accessibility by air, sea, and land for your business setup in Dubai
DMCC is a high-end free zone option for businesses in the financial or commodities sectors. With a single license, DMCC allows up to six business activities (from the same group), including industrial, service, general trade, and crypto commodities trading. In addition, DMCC is one of the few free zones that provides entrepreneurs with dual licenses.
Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA)
Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA) is DP World’s flagship free zone, and the Middle East’s largest customs bonded zone, with over 8,700 companies, including 100+ Fortune Global 500 companies.
JAFZA is a benchmark free zone for businesses looking to set up their operations in Dubai. It is ISO certified and supports a variety of business modules and advanced work procedures. JAFZA grants businesses licenses for trade, service, industrial, and e-commerce operations.
Due to its favourable location close to the Jebel Ali Sea Port, it is the ideal free zone in Dubai for the establishment of new import and export businesses. With no restrictions on foreign ownership, JAFZA is an excellent choice for international investors looking to establish a presence in the region. Businesses in these zones are governed by the free zone’s independent authority, which issues operating licenses and regulates the activities of all enterprises within the site.
Today, JAFZA is proud to be a dynamic base for thousands of businesses from over 130 countries, employing over 130,000 people and attracting 23.9% of Dubai’s foreign direct investments.
Ras Al Khaimah Economic Zone (RAKEZ)
Ras Al Khaimah, the UAE’s northernmost emirate, is emerging as one of the most vibrant business destinations, attracting the attention of industrial investors. The region combines a business-friendly environment with cost competitiveness, prompting several business professionals to come forward and incorporate a business in RAK. The RAKEZ (Ras-Al-Khaimah Economic Zone) is a strategic location and supportive business hub home to over 14,500+ companies and over 50 industries.
The presence of one of the region’s leading centres for maritime and industrial commerce, Saqr Port in Ras Al Khaimah Economic Zone (RAKEZ), supports trading and industrial companies’ timely import and export aspects by handling large amounts of heavy bulk cargo.
Moreover, the location of your company in the UAE is an essential factor in ensuring a smooth business registration process. Setting up in RAK is highly advantageous for conducting both light and heavy and large-scale manufacturing activities. The emirate provides RAK warehouse solutions in its three industrial zones, which include spaces for loading and unloading consignments, offices, heat-insulated doors and roofs, and more. Furthermore, the emirate has labour accommodations to help you save money on employee transportation
Dubai Airport Free Zone Authority (DAFZA)
The Dubai Airport Freezone (DAFZ) is one of the world’s most advanced and innovative free zones. Businesses benefit from a competitive advantage in their operations due to their strategic locations coupled with world-class infrastructure in the heart of Dubai.
DAFZA is home to over 3,100+ businesses, including the light industry, pharmaceuticals, trading, logistics, information technology, jewellery, and manufacturing. DAFZA free zone, located near Dubai International Airport, serves as a commercial hub for the MENA region, Europe, and the rest of Asia.
Investors from abroad can establish a company in DAFZA to benefit from complete business ownership and a tax-free environment. The best-in-class infrastructure and modern facilities enable businesses to begin operations within days of establishing their company. Tax breaks, investor incentives, and a lack of currency restrictions are among the many advantages of joining the DAFZ business community, making DAFZ one of the world’s most appealing economic growth opportunities.
Get Expert Help For Business Setup With TASC
Establishing your business in a free zone has plenty of benefits that can help you get a head start in the region. If you’re looking for world-class infrastructure, 100% foreign ownership, and no taxes, then a free zone is the right choice. Choosing the right free zone in the UAE is a challenging process – this is where TASC Corporate Services comes into play!
We at TASC Corporate Services are your strategic business partners who not only assist you with the business setup process but also with staffing and a lot more. You can be worry-free and handle your business goals while we handle everything else!
With expert business formation and PRO services from industry leaders like our team at TASC Corporate Services, you can avoid the hassle and save money. Please consult with us to determine which free zone is best for your start-up and take the first step towards making your ideas a reality. Let us handle the process so you can get back to business quickly and without stress.