Business Setup In Dubai Freezone

Freezone Company Formation Dubai UAE

Freezones are geographically demarcated areas within the United Arab Emirates (not necessarily fenced or gated). They authorise 100% foreign ownership and are mostly defined for a specific industry. Also known as free trade zones, these are primarily economic areas where goods and services are traded. The purpose of free zones was to boost international business in the region by offering several investment benefits. The most attractive one is 100% foreign company ownership.

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Types of Licenses for Dubai Free Zone?

The following licenses are offered by free zone authorities for Dubai freezone business setup:-


Trading licenses allow companies to operate in trading activities like buying, import & export, and selling of a limited number of commodities.


After obtaining a general trading licence one can engage in trading of all types of goods, with an exemption on a few banned products. You will need special approval with this license to engage in banned products.


To deal with activities like consulting, accountancy, etc. services license need to be acquired.


To carry out manufacturing, packaging and processing activities, companies need to obtain this license.

Necessary Documents to Apply for a Business Setup in Freezone

To Obtain a Business License

  • Coloured copy of shareholder(s)’ passport and visa, if applicable
  • Application Form
  • Business Plan
  • Board Resolution
  • Memorandum and Articles of Association (MAA)

To Open a Bank Account

  • A corporate account opening form
  • A board of directors’ resolution sanctioning the opening of the account, and the signatories to the account
  • A copy of your company’s certificate of incorporation
  • A copy of your share certificate
  • A copy of the company’s Memorandum and Articles of Association (MAA)
  • Copies of passports for all partners in the company

Process of Company Registration in Freezones

  • Determine the type of legal entity
  • Choose a trading name
  • Apply for a business license
  • Find an office space
  • Get pre-approval from authorities
  • Register your business
  • Obtain your license

Dubai Free Zone Areas

There are more than 30 Free Zones operating in Dubai, which include the following:-

  • Dubai Silicon Oasis
  • Dubai Airport Free Zone
  • Dubai Design District
  • Dubai Healthcare City
  • Dubai International Academic City
  • Dubai Internet City
  • Dubai International Financial Centre
  • Dubai Knowledge Village
  • Dubai Media City
  • Dubai Studio City
  • Dubai Silicon Oasis
  • Dubai Airport Free Zone
  • Dubai Design District
  • Dubai Healthcare City
  • Dubai International Academic City
  • Dubai Internet City
  • Dubai International Financial Centre
  • Dubai Knowledge Village
  • Dubai Media City
  • Dubai Studio City

Advantages and Disadvantages of Free Trade Zones in Dubai

Advantages of Business Setup in UAE Free Zones

Discover the many advantages of joining our Freezone

  • 100% foreign ownership
  • 100% business ownership, repatriation of profits and capital
  • 100% exemption from corporate, personal and income taxes
  • Exemption from export and import duties
  • The timely and smooth immigration process
  • Thriving business atmosphere
  • Strategic location
  • One energetic business
  • Flexible solutions
  • One-stop-place for various solutions
  • Online portal for all services

Disadvantages of Free Zones Dubai

  • Can not conduct trade directly with the local UAE market.
  • Can only commence the local business through locally appointed distributors.

  • Business Activities in Free Zones in Dubai (UAE)

    Broadcast Management

    Activities you can engage in include web streaming, radio broadcasting, and TV broadcasting. You will need approvals from all concerned authorities and only certain packages encourage this activity.

    Consultancy Services

    Consultancy services include a wide array of consulting activities that cover business consultancy, financial consultant, investment consultancy, legal consultancy, lifestyle consultancy, human resource consultancy and more.

    Education and Training

    The education and training category comprises many activities, but the activities are available under packages with visa eligibility.

    Event Management

    Event management consists of many activities, from organising events, fairs, trade shows, exhibitions, business conferences to theater productions and more.

    Film, Production and Post-Production

    The activities covered in this category are licensed film, art, and video production, and also post-production.

    Industrial Activities

    Industrial licences cover manufacturing, fabrication, and processing of raw materials for the productions of finished goods or final products. Industrial activities mostly co-occur with warehousing requirements.

    IT Services

    IT services include the information and communications technology sector services, including B2B, B2C, e-commerce.

    Media and Marketing Services

    The media and marketing category consists of a host of activities that include - advertising, public relations, promotions, research, and more.

    Music and Entertainment

    Music production and recording, music promotion and management, music rights and theme parks management are covered in music and entertainment services.

    New Media

    New media comprises photography, videography, web design, extensive digital media services that also include the creation and management of mobile phone applications.


    Publishing of education and consumer books, magazines, directories and guides, online and electronic content, and many more are included in this. However, you will need approval from authorities for what you plan to publish.


    All import or export-related transactions can be done under this.

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    Business Setup Freezone Dubai

    FAQs for Freezone Business

    What is a Free Zone Company in UAE?
    Free Zone is an authority where a business owner of any nationality can have 100% ownership of their company. The companies in the free zone are exempted from import and export duties. They are also given a designated area to function. Additionally, there is 100% repartition of capital and profits.
    What are the Different Free Zone Companies in Dubai, UAE?
    The different types of companies that you can set up in the UAE free zones are:-

    ● Private free zone company
    ● En-commendam branch of an international company
    ● Branch of the company already working in Dubai
    ● Professional services
    What is the Cost of the Free Zone Business Setup in UAE?
    In the case of a Free zone, the cost varies from free zone to free zone and it also depends on the number of visas. So, 100% estimation is not possible.
    You can contact us to know the exact amount.
    What is the Major Disadvantage of a Free Zone Company?
    Free Zone Company cannot go into direct business with the UAE local market. They can undertake local business through the locally appointed distributors. For a local business, the customs duty of 5% is levied.
    What is the Cost of License Registration in Freezone?
    The type of license you apply for directly impacts the total cost to acquire a free zone license in Dubai. The cost varies as per the type of license like - General Trading, Commercial, Industrial, Service and so on. Usually, the cost of a free zone license in Dubai is approx. AED 10K to 50K.
    You have options to choose among - a Free Zone Company (FZC), Free Zone Establishment (FZE), Branch of a Foreign Company, or Branch of a UAE Company if you opt for a Free Zone business structure. Based on the option you choose, your registration formalities and various other charges vary. The cost of registering a free zone company is approx. AED 15K to 50K.
    Can anybody own land or property in free trade zones?
    One can lease a property where business is located in the free zones.
    Is annual audit compulsory for a free zone company?
    Every free zone has its own rules and regulations. Therefore, you may or may not need a yearly audit, depending on your company type and free zone laws.
    Can a free zone company conduct business anywhere in the UAE?
    No, it cannot. A free trade zone company can work only with companies in the same free zone jurisdiction that has issued the licence and with companies overseas. Also, a free zone company cannot even conduct business with UAE mainland companies. However, for services companies specifically, it can be allowed if the UAE mainland company is willing to engage with the free zone company. In some jurisdictions, the free zone company can now apply for a Dual Licence into the mainland if eager to deal with mainland companies.

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    OBK Business Centre LLC