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UAE Company Formation

Benefits of Setting Up an International Business Company (IBC)

A free zone, or free trade zone, is an area with special tax-free status and low trade barriers where goods can be manufactured, imported/exported, handled, or reconfigured without paying any customs duty. Free trade zones are generally located in strategic geographical locations like national borders, international airports and major seaports, to maximise trading advantages.

The UAE government has set up multiple free zones in the Emirates, each designed for specific business activity. UAE free trade zones offer lucrative facilities to non-resident corporates, like the convenience of single-window administration, no bureaucratic red tape, and 100% ownership. There are about 44 free zones situated all over United Arab Emirates that have attracted foreign direct investment in the form of 200,000 companies contributing to the GDP growth. The free trade zones vary in their focus, setup costs and paperwork needed, but the basic requirements are the same.

Most of the UAE Emirates have set up free zones to boost the economy in the region, promote foreign investment, and drive growth. Free Zone Authority is the government body that registers and issues business licenses to non-resident companies in UAE free zones.

Benefits of Setting Up a Business in the UAE Free Zones

There are many benefits of starting a business in the UAE. But the UAE free zones offer some additional advantages if an investor decides to set up a business in one of the free zones. They are:

  • 100% foreign ownership
  • 100% repatriation of capital and profits
  • 100% exemption from corporate, personal and income taxes
  • 100% free transfer of funds, and no foreign exchange controls
  • Exemption from all import and export duties
  • Low freight charges
  • Abundant and inexpensive energy
  • Inexpensive workforce, and easy recruitment procedures
  • Efficient communication procedures and single-window administration
  • Liberal government policies and legal framework
  • The timely and streamlined immigration process
  • Sponsorship and visas for an affordable skilled workforce
  • Flexibility to operate 24/7
  • Freehold offices available for sale or lease
  • Ready-made offices, factories, and warehouses
  • Easy start-up and licensing procedures
  • Unique industry clustering and purpose-built infrastructure
  • 3-year UAE residence visa
  • No restrictions on hiring expatriates

In case you cannot decide whether to set up a free zone company (“FZ”) or an international business company (“IBC”) you can choose the “Premium Product” which is a combination of a RAK International Corporate Centre (RAK ICC) Company and a RAK Economic Zone (RAKEZ) entity. The company has to be established with RAK ICC first and then the subsidiary of the same is established with the RAKEZ. This gives the discerning investor an opportunity to enjoy the best of both.

Main Benefits

  • Companies are treated as business enterprise of substance.
  • Investors can open bank accounts locally and internationally.
  • Option to lease a physical facility from RAKEZ.
  • Enjoy Double Taxation Treaty benefits.
  • Global trade and investments.
  • Eligibility for a UAE Residence Visa.

Our team of experts is here to assist you in incorporating a company in EU to jurisdictions with attractive low tax regimes as well as to non-EU jurisdictions through our extended network of experts.  No matter which jurisdiction you will select, you will benefit from our extensive experience in the field and from our continuous support throughout the incorporation and on an ongoing basis.

There are no corporate taxes, no capital gains tax, no income tax, no withholding tax, and no export or import taxes. However, U.S. taxpayers and everyone residing in a country which taxes global income must report all income to their tax authority. In January 1, 2018 UAE added a small value added tax (VAT).

The liability of a shareholder is limited on any amount unpaid on a share held by the shareholder.

The names of the shareholders are not part of any public records.

Only a minimum of one shareholder is required.

Only a minimum of one director is required.

Professional services, general trading, advisory and consulting services, investments, online business, and acting as a holding company for global assets.

While not being the official language, all documents can be prepared in English which is a widely spoken language in the UAE.