How to Choose the Best Free Zone for Business Registration in the UAE

by Elaine E. Traditional Chinese Medical Center


Establishing a business in a free zone in the UAE can be appealing and challenging. Foreign investors are drawn to having full control of their companies and tax-free advantages. Free trade zones (Free Zones) are designed to boost international business that gives 100% ownership to expats.

Free zones are ideal for starting your business; there are world-class business amenities, state-of-the-art infrastructure, flexible government policies, tax, duty exemptions, and modern facilities. Free zones provide you with multiple business opportunities; you can choose the one that suits you.

Types of Free Zones

There are 2 categories of Free Zones in the UAE; industry-specific and general purpose. Free Zones in the UAE are classified into individual Free Zones and geographical locations. For instance, if you want to establish a creative and media-related business, you can start it in Dubai Media City. There are individual Free Zones around the UAE that are designed for specific activities, such as healthcare, financial services, general trading, etc.

General-purpose Free Zones are ideal if you feel that your company needs a generalist approach, and you are not willing to stick to a specific niche. You can establish your business in Free Zones, such as Dubai Multi Commodities Center (DMCC). These Free Zones allow you to choose from an extensive list of companies.

How to Choose the Best UAE Free Zone for Your Business


It’s easy to get lost when trying to choose the best location for your business. Here are steps to follow when choosing the best Free Zone in the UAE.

Choose a Business Activity

Each Free Zone is designed for specific activities and has different rules, controlling how many businesses you can conduct using the same license. It’s necessary to consult an expert from a law firm in Dubai so you can follow the rules and regulations of a particular zone. Your license will cost more if you choose many activities.

Choose Your Work Space

A good businessperson plans ahead. If you don’t plan to expand your business for the next few years, you can get a flexi-desk or a shared space at a co-working space. This is the minimum facility requirement for acquiring a business license. Get an office in a different location if your business involves meeting with clients.


You need to find out how many residence visas your business requires. You can make your work easier by hiring legal consultants in Dubai to guide you throughout this process. Your company requires residence visas for every employee; the quota depends on the type of facility. For instance, a shared desk limits the number of visas; this differs in various Free Zones. Physical offices have their own space requirements; 9-10 square meters receives 1 visa quota.


You need to decide whether your business is better suited near an airport or seaport. This allows you to have strategic transportation hubs and routes; this helps you to save on expenses. You can start your business in the DMCC Free Zone, which has excellent infrastructure and is ideal for setting up a luxury office. There are many spaces in the impressive skyscrapers that can accommodate meetings, customers, and employees.

Share Capital Amount

It is necessary to know whether a share capital amount is required for your business. It is a common requirement for corporations to deposit a share capital amount during registration. This is deposited in the UAE Free Zone Authority account or your company account. You also need to show proof of deposit in the zone. Different Free Zones have varying requirements for share capital amount.


You should find out whether there are any restrictions on shareholders before setting up your business. Did you know that there are restrictions on shareholders from certain nationalities in the Free Zones? It’s necessary to research about these restrictions or consult a legal expert to guide you.

Find Out Whether You Need an Annual Audit Report

Some Free Zones require you to submit financial statements like annual audit reports. If you establish your business in the DMCC Free Zone, you will need to present an annual audit report at the end of every financial year or according to your MOA. You should submit this report via one of the UAE's auditors from the DMCC approved auditors list.

You will be penalized if you submit this report after the deadline. You also enjoy various benefits if you submit the information on time; you can apply for business loans at local UAE banks, helps you to find out the financial health of your business, and attract many investors.

The UAE is one of the best regions to set up your business; however, it can be confusing to choose a Free Zone that suits your company. It’s necessary to understand the laws governing each Free Zone; you can do this by consulting a legal expert to guide you.

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About Elaine E. Junior   Traditional Chinese Medical Center

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Joined APSense since, July 1st, 2019, From Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

Created on Sep 17th 2020 03:52. Viewed 180 times.


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