Setting up a company in
the UAE’s Free Trade Zones

Affordable incorporation solutions with 100% foreign ownership, designed for doing
business both within the Free Trade Zone area and outside the country.

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There are over 50 Free Trade Zones dotted across 5 of the 7 Emirates. Companies in a FTZ can be totally foreign owned with no local involvement required, unlike Mainland Companies. Each specializes in supporting one or more licensed business activities and offers unique benefits, such as financial, geographic, facilities, labor and more. They are linked to large logistics centers, ports or airports and offer ready-made warehousing and offices, with exceptionally high-grade infrastructure and utilities. Many FZ represent budget solutions for setting up in the UAE.

Setting up a company inside a Free Zone
provides unique business opportunities

Registering a company in one of the Free Trade Zones gives you a budget tool for organizing international business and the
opportunity to use the commercial advantages granted by UAE legislation, the banking system, and the highly developed logistics
and transport infrastructure of the country.

Run a trading
business

Conduct international trade, export, re-export,
but sell goods in the local market of the UAE
only through distributors.

Operate a
manufacturing facility

Take advantage of duty - free import of raw
materials, storage within the FZ, and export
products outside the UAE.

Manage a service
business

Provide a wide range of services to
international contractors, including
to the FTZ of incorporation.

Residence permit and
tax domicile

Obtain a residence permit and the status
of a tax resident (domicile) for shareholders,
employees and their families.

Property and assets
registration

All assets and real estate, including foreign
ones, can be registered to the Free Zone
company.

Global business
operations

0% corporate taxes for international
businesses provides genuine justification
for setting up a FTZ company.

KYC (Know Your Customer) and CRS (Common Reporting Standard) standards, as well as ESR (Economic Substance Requirements) - the new reality of modern business - require you to confirm that Management and Control of your FTZ company rests in the UAE and not elsewhere. We can recommend effective solutions to achieve this within the parameters laid down by law.

SORP’s solutions for Free Zone company
incorporation

Choosing the right zone
and business model

We will pinpoint the right business
activity and the license, and the best
FTZ for achieving all your business
goals.

Registering your
Business

We tie up legal requirements quickly
because of our strong cooperations
with the licensing authorities as well
as knowledge of the procedures.

Opening your
bank account

We guide you through KYC
compliance with assistance in your
choice of leading UAE banks. SORP
know-how gets things done quickly.

Prestigious
legal address

Use our Business Center as
your base for completing KYC
procedures and while confirming
ESR (Economic Substance).

PRO business
support

We do the legwork to obtain visas
for investors, employees and their
families, renew licenses, permits
and so forth.

Outsourced
business processes

We provide integrated legal,
tax, accounting and administrative
services with full business support
and a highly professional approach.


Unique features of doing business in the UAE’s
Free Trade Zones

100% foreign ownership

A company registered in the FTZ can be
fully owned by a foreign investor, without
any requirements for a local partner or
agent to be involved.

Many business activities supported

FTZs specialize in one or more business
activities and the range of their options
is wide, from investment consulting and
healthcare to trade, logistics and more.

Deciding on location is important

Rent or purchase commercial,
warehouse, industrial and office
premises only in the FTZ of your
incorporation – not elsewhere.

Business licensing

Free Zone licensing process is unique
to each FTZ and depends on the type of
business activity you are carrying on.

Visa conditions

The number of visas that a company
can get depends on the size of the
premises it occupies.

License renewal

Some Free Zones require submission of
annual financial statements and audits in
order to renew the business license.


Some important considerations when
choosing a Free Zone for incorporation

Incorporation process

Your business activity is the deciding
factor in choosing FTZ. Each Free
Zone has its own list of the activities.
They also have their own registration
terms, forms, approvals as well as all
documentation required, and internal
regulations.

Infrastructure and logistics

The needs of your businesses will help
you decide where to register. Proximity
to transport hubs or airports matters if
import, delivery and storage of goods
are important. Availability of premises
and facilities, engineering networks or
technical services may be critical too.

Budgeting factors

Zones decide their own pricing for
incorporation, premises leasing, and
license renewal. Location is a factor.
Those closest to Dubai and Abu Dhabi
are generally more expensive and so
your budget may dictate zones further
away.

Reputation matters. Banks have their own internal rating of each UAE Free Trade Zone, which they use to determine the relative reliability of companies registered there. That can make opening bank accounts in the future significantly easier. Contractors, too, are aware of the jurisdiction of incorporation. It follows that you should ideally focus on the premium zones if possible or open a Mainland Company instead, especially if you are planning to enter the domestic market.


Integrated solutions from SORP for professional
business assistance to companies in the UAE

Business planning
and the right model

We help you plan and implement a
properly licensed business model
and solid basis for operations. We will guide you in creating a retail
network and accessing global or
local markets.

Advice, consultancy
and support

We will analyze the market, the
competition and the relevant
legislation. We will suggest the
best locations for your business to
ensure it can operate in the best
and most productive environment.

Local nominee
partner or agent

We will provide a restricted rights
director and shareholder to exclude
transfer pricing and for concealing
the actual beneficiary of company.
A waiver of rights is obtained in the
Dubai court.

Obtaining tax
residency status

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

International
Tax Planning

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

Confirmation of
economic substance

We help fulfil proof of economic
substance based on the registered
location of your company, as well
as localized decision making and
management, and tax compliance.

SORP’s long experience guarantees the success of
your operation in the UAE

Expert status

Tap into our specialist expertise and proven formula for organizing manufacturing businesses. Benefit from our knowledge, processes and tools for solving challenges.

Integrated approach

Creating a secure structure, legal and secretarial support, confirmation of the control center, and much more on the SORP Group platform

Shielding your interests

We will ensure the security of your investments and take measures to protect the owners and directors confidentiality

SORP Business Center

A prestigious address based on our business Center in Dubai will confirm the reputation of a reliable counterparty for your clients and partners.

Legal support

SORP Group corporate lawyers and strategic partnerships with the best lawyers in the UAE and around the world will provide you with prompt legal support for business

15 years of experience

Expert knowledge in opening and supporting companies working in any field of business activities


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