How to get a construction
business license in the UAE

Open your construction business in the United Arab Emirates and you are guaranteed to
be investing in the best performing profitable sector in a leading Middle East country.

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Driven by ongoing economic diversification, the lucrative UAE construction sector will need foreign construction companies for the foreseeable future. Licenses are state-controlled and the regulatory framework is fair but strict. As industry experts, SORP Group provides a head start for gaining entry to this market, providing efficient and reliable solutions to fast-track the legal procedures involved.

Major construction licenses available for
business in the UAE and abroad

Construction of all
types of buildings
and facilities

Construction of residential buildings, villas,
malls, production areas and warehouse
premises and other types of buildings under
a general license

Full range of
construction works

Making it possible to do tax-free business
abroad, with the entire range of construction
services, building operation and contract
works being permitted

Maintenance of
facilities on a
turnkey basis

Supply of construction materials, furniture,
equipment and decorative elements to
already erected facilities, and facilities
which are under construction

and concrete

Wall and foundation construction, concrete
casting of industrial and warehouse floors,
reinforcement of cracks with concrete

Construction of
special purpose

Construction of electric power substations,
sewage disposal plants, pipelines, also on
seaport and airport sites

of metal

Installation of frame structures, exhibition
stands and / or pavilions, hangars, as well
as steel and metal structures

Facade and finishing

Internal or external wall covering of
commercial, industrial and residential
premises with any materials


Development, improvement and organization
of parks and gardens, arrangement of villa
and cottage grounds

Duct and air
ventilation systems

Installation, maintenance and connection
of ventilation systems to buildings and

SORP solutions for licensing and support of
construction businesses in the UAE


We will choose the right type of
company and most suitable place
of incorporation for the best fit


Fast processing through the legal
procedures based on of our trusted
status with DM and DED

Local partner
or agent

Nominee service from SORP
Investment LLC with a waiver
of rights in the Dubai court

office address

SORP Business Centre provides our
clients with the opportunity to rent
an office under Ejari / Estidama
license, rent flexi-desks or E-office

Opening a
bank account

Cooperation with UAE banks,
understanding of compliance
procedures and assistance in
passing KYC and interviews

PRO - business

Representation of interests at the
Ministry of Labor and other state
authorities for visas and licenses
with support always available 24/7

What’s involved in getting a UAE construction

Construction companies are controlled by the state. Before starting incorporation, it is important to understand the unique aspects
of licensing and obtaining approvals from the relevant UAE authorities: Municipalities, Construction Departments, Economic
Departments of the Emirate or Free Economic Zone regulators.

Jurisdiction of incorporation

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The first step to creating a construction company in the UAE is choosing the jurisdiction. This determines where you can do business and the requirements for incorporation. The only way to obtain a construction license for engaging in construction and installation works within the UAE itself is to register a local (mainland) company.
To operate outside the UAE, you can use a special license offered by some FTZs as an exception to the general rules.

Terms of ownership

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Obtaining construction licenses (excluding design work) in the form of LLC / SE / CC and incorporation of a Mainland company are available for 100% foreign ownership without the involvement of a local partner or an agent (Local Service Agent). However to simplify interaction with government agencies, as well as enabling participation in local tenders, we recommend appointing a professional Process Agent.

Control by the State

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All aspects of construction activities are controlled by the UAE Building Department. Obtaining individual licenses requires additional approvals from the Department of road industry, the Department of Civil Protection, and other agencies depending on the field of activity. To obtain some licenses for construction works in the UAE, you need to provide technical personnel and pass a number of procedures for accreditation of experts.

License categories

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Licenses for the construction of buildings and facilities are divided into categories that determine the maximum permissible height of structures that can be built. For example:
G+1 (Ground Floor + 1 Floor) – construction of structures up to 2 floors high
G+4 (Ground Floor + 4 Floors) – construction of structures up to 5 floors high
G+12 (Ground Floor + 12 Floors) – construction of structures up to 13 floors high
UL (unlimited) – there are no restrictions on the height of structures that can be built

Requirements for obtaining a specific license category

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The higher the license category, the more difficult it is to obtain due to conditions imposed by the government agencies. During the registration process, the requirements for personnel that must be present in the company's workforce are set out. That includes engineering and technical experts accredited in the UAE, construction workers and administrative personnel.

It is also necessary to confirm that the company has special construction equipment and cargo transport, that it rents an office of a certain size, proves the availability of fixed assets, and provides a bank guarantee.

Obtaining a high-category construction license

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UAE legislation restricts the issue of high-category licenses to new construction companies. The process of upgrading the license category takes place on a phased basis over the course of operating the business. It takes completed projects into account and additional Building Department approvals need to be secured. To help expedite this process, the experts of SORP Group offer ready-made solutions for the purchase of a suitably-licensed existing construction company with subsequent accelerated promotion to a higher category

Comprehensive SORP support services
for doing business in the UAE

Construction activities in the UAE are regulated by the state and municipalities. Therefore, to choose the best model for
organizing a construction business in the UAE, we have developed solutions that prevent you from making mistakes.
  • Individual business

    We integrate ideal development
    strategies for you based on the
    competition and the law. Then we
    choose the right operating license
    for doing local or global business

  • Business

    We will ensure that all stages of
    starting a business are completed.
    We will build relationships with
    government agencies that regulate
    all activities

  • Business
    process outsourcing

    It makes sense to use SORP’s
    professional help in administrative,
    recruiting, accounting PRO and tax
    competencies, saving the cost of
    employing highly paid personnel

  • Obtaining tax
    residency status

    Enjoy tax resident (domicile)
    status shielding you from CRS
    requirements for sharing your
    tax details and preventing double

  • International
    Tax Planning

    We design optimized tax solutions
    for international business within
    the full scope of UAE legislation,
    drawing on our wide experience
    and successful cases in this field

  • Confirmation of
    economic substance

    We help fulfil proof of economic
    substance based on the registered
    location of your company, with its
    localized decision - making and
    management, tax compliance

SORP Group will become your reliable long-term
partner in supporting your UAE business

Integrated solutions

A comprehensive approach from drawing up a development plan for a construction company, obtaining all permits and licensing, to supporting the company's activities

15 years of experience

In the field of company incorporation, licensing and support for construction companies and related activities, and helping to resolve issues on the way to achieving their goals.

Complicated issues

We have expertise in all areas of the construction business in the UAE, including specialist tools to help resolve even the most complex issues.

Expert Status

We are able to make a legally sound decision on the choice of a license based on an analysis of your needs and provide advice on all issues related to licensing.

SORP Business Center

54,000 sq. ft. of modern office space for passing licensing procedures in the UAE and confirming requirements for incorporation

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