Company Formation: Read Before You Start!

Company Formation In Dubai | Get A Supportive Agent

Company formation in Dubai: Are you afraid of choosing the wrong zone? A supportive registration agent will remove your anxieties

Company formation in Dubai: If you want to set up a business in the UAE … then read on!

There are over 2,000 types of activities that are licensed, and which you can apply to do business in. In over 25 free zones. In 7 Emirates [Dubai, Sharjah, Abu Dhabi, Umm Al Quwain, Ajman, and Ras Al Khaimah] of the United Arab Emirates [UAE].

Please invest 2 minutes of your time to watch the company formation in Dubai video below. It spells out how you can benefit. Or if you prefer to read, then feel free to skip the video and go straight to the text below:

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Would you be willing to pay only USD 700+ for advice to help you choose the right license, jurisdiction, and Emirate? Probably, since it will save you time and money. And will help you to prevent mistakes in registration.

Your registration agent, if supportive, will answer many of your questions. And help you to reach a conclusion that meets your objectives of investing in the UAE.

Once your choice of license, jurisdiction, and Emirate are made, the next step for the company registration agent would be to get your Know Your Client [KYC] documents and the payment for the whole process. These consist of passports, proof of address, and sometimes a bank reference letter.

Normally payments are taken in advance since they have to be paid to the government authorities as the steps are taken. And the costs are incurred by the registration agents along the way.

So how do you trust that your registration agent won’t run away with the money?

Check their website. Chat with their team. Look at social media references for their company. See any reviews or testimonials. Ask for their own registration details. Transfer your payment to their bank account or through credit card payments. If you are paying cash, then get a receipt. Visit the office. Pay them in their offices. They have been doing this for years and haven’t run away.

How long does the process take? What does it cost?

To register a company 25 to 35 tasks are to be done, depending on the type of license, the zone, and the Emirate. The time taken to complete them could be anywhere from 15 to 60 days depending on hurdles.

The type of hurdles could be incomplete KYC, the late presence of investors if required for the signing of documents, inquiries raised by the authorities, and so on.

The steps include preparation of application and Memorandum and Articles of Association [MOA], getting complete KYC from the investors, physical submission of documents to the jurisdiction, answering queries, setting up project monitoring, and many others. Finally, going to get the registration certificate and the MOA. Some zones also provide share certificates.

The fee for doing all this work could be between USD. 1,700 to 2,000.

Company Formation In Dubai | Get A Supportive Agent

Varal Customer Service Executive

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Dubai local company

For a Dubai local company, you will need to have a UAE National as your ‘Sponsor’ for an LLC company or ‘Service Agent’ for a Professional License company.

One of the steps required for the Dubai local company registration includes going to the Dubai Court to register your agreement with your Sponsor or Service Agent. The agreement usually calls for the UAE national to receive a fixed annual fee, regardless of how your company does financially.


However, note that requirements sometimes change suddenly. Most registration agents are aware of this and will help you find an alternative workable solution. But it’s another reason why delays happen.

Bank account opening

Most investors in Dubai require a bank account for their companies. However, this is not always easy for newcomers. Your company registration agent will be able to introduce you to the best fit bankers and help in opening your company’s account.

Various follow-up and document exchanges with your bank are also carried out by your agent. Your agent will have no access to your bank information and the bank will deal with you directly after the setup is complete.

Bank accounts could take 15 to 30 days to open and get access to internet banking for your account. So plan for it and manage your expectations.

This will usually cost you around USD. 1,000+ and will be worth it in order to save you the effort and inconvenience. Without this help, it may take you 2 months to set up an account.

Company Formation In Dubai | Get A Supportive Agent

Varal Managing Director

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Acting on behalf of clients

Companies in Dubai or the UAE are tax-free and many investors want to keep their costs low. So they hire their company registration agents to act on their behalf in many areas:

a. As a nominee to facilitate and solve problems

  • Bank
  • Legal
  • Jurisdiction [zone of registration]

b. Trust services to act on behalf of clients

  • Accounting & Bookkeeping
  • Nominee
  • Bank Introduction
  • Signatory
  • As a Manager of their company to provide a UAE resident place of business

c. Prepare documents including legal documents

  • Company registration
  • Visas
  • Amendments to company structure, others
  • Power Of Attorneys
  • Board Of Directors resolutions

d. Fiduciary services

  • Hold funds on behalf of clients
  • Make payments on behalf of clients

Charges depend on the type of service required.

Types of employment visas

To live or work in the United Arab Emirates you will need an employment visa. This could be as an Investor or as an Employee of a company. Both are for 2 or 3 years depending on the jurisdiction and must be renewed.

You can also sponsor visas for your dependents after your own visa is received. Rules keep changing, but as an Investor, you will certainly be eligible.

Families have been in Dubai for more than 4 generations with this system. No passports are issued based on length of stay.

Degree attestation

Employment visas come in many categories based on your educational qualifications. To be accepted, your last degree must be attested by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the country where your degree was obtained, then by the corresponding UAE Embassy in that country, and finally by the UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the UAE.

This is quite tedious and yes, companies have sprung up who do this process professionally.

Visa process & medical test

The process starts with an application to the authorities on behalf of your company with your attested degree.

Once the Entry Permit is received you will have 60 days to enter the UAE from the date of issue of the permit.

On arrival, you will be taken for a blood test and maybe a chest x-ray. AIDS or HIV, Hepatitis B, Leprosy & Tuberculosis will deny you a visa and will get you deported.

If all is well you will have a visa stamped in your passport within 10 working days. Some Emirates offer an Express service for an additional fee.

Renewals of licenses and visas

Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Ras Al Khaimah, and Umm Al Quwain in the United Arab Emirates, earn up to 75% of their annual budgets from license fees, visa fees, and fines.

Abu Dhabi is the only one that also has oil money and generously helps the other Emirates with infrastructure and other costs.

Perhaps, unlike in your country, your company license needs to be renewed annually. Professional licenses e.g. for doctors, nurses, and engineers also are renewed annually. Visas are renewed every 2 or 3 years.

Your company registration agent will be happy to do all these things for you so you can focus on running your own business.

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Headaches & Triumphs of being in Dubai


  • The UAE is an Islamic country. So naturally, the laws are Sharia. And non-muslims are 2nd class citizens. Which is fine, but sometimes a hurdle when it comes to issues regarding the courts. Remember you are here of your own choice.
  • All government functions in Arabic. So if you know the language you will have an advantage.
  • Annual renewals for company and licenses will seem different from what you are used to at home.
  • Getting a driver’s license. This may require you to take 40 driving lessons and 6 months.
  • Rules may change and you may be bewildered about the next steps because the information is not readily available.


  • No money to be spent in keeping tax accounts
  • No money to be spent on tax experts
  • Superlative infrastructure
  • A government that works
  • Well connected by airlines to most countries in the world
  • Efficient Logistics infrastructure
  • Can get visas easily for almost all nationalities e.g. 100+ nationalities work in Dubai
  • No visa quotas
  • Import duties are very low at 5%
  • Schools with curriculum from many different countries
  • Colleges affiliated with the US, Europe, UK, India & Australia
  • A police force that has competently kept crime low even with so many nationalities
  • Dynamic ruler of Dubai who cares for his city

Will you take the time to settle in? Yes.

It will be worth it. And after a year you will be extolling the praises of Dubai to your friends and family.

Will things go wrong? Yes.

Your supportive company registration agent will be there to guide you through to the other side.

Company Formation In Dubai | Get A Supportive Agent

Varal CEO

Worried about reminders? HABOT has it all covered. Notifications are embedded within the app and will appear on your phone’s status bar. Subscribers will also get email notifications. Sign up now.

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Company Formation: Read Before You Start! was last modified: July 6th, 2022 by Ramapati Singhania

Ramapati Singhania

He strives for excellence in all he does and brings out the best in his people through guidance, a strong vision and support. He is exceptionally open-minded, flexible, dependable, understanding and straightforward in all words and actions and encourages personal as well as professional growth.

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