How to start a manufacturing
business in the UAE

Follow our proven formula for successfully setting up or relocating a production facility with the help of experts.
Take advantage of government support for manufacturing businesses in the UAE.

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The UAE is one of the best countries in which to start or relocate your manufacturing business. It offers proactive government support, a very advantageous tax system, strategically beneficial geographical location, a growing and affluent consumer base, as well as political and economic stability. SORP Group offers the vital expertise and support you need to establish and grow your manufacturing business in the UAE, from initial licensing to the day-to-day operational routine.

The most demanded spheres of production in the UAE


Components used in construction, such as panels, windows, doors, fittings, glass, roofing products

and drinks

Production of all types of food products. The most in demand are dairy products, water, groceries

and healthcare

Manufacture of pharmaceutical and parapharmaceutica products and medicines, medical products and equipment

Rolled metal
and components

Production of sheet metal, as well as metal components for any purpose


Light industry: fabrics, clothing, including children's clothing, textile products

Transport and
spare parts

Manufacture of cars, agricultural machinery, heavy vehicles, as well as spare parts

Electronic devices

Manufacture of all types of household appliances, measuring equipment, communications

Plastics and polymers

Manufacture of plastic products and products from composite materials or polymers

Chemical products

All types of paints and varnishes, fertilizers, basic chemicals, pesticides, household chemicals

Stages of organizing a manufacturing business in the UAE

  • Choose a working business model

    Different legal entities and business models have varying freedoms and restrictions. For example, to retail manufactured goods in the local UAE market, you need to register a mainland company. Choosing the correct model is crucial to ensure you can operate in the way you want.

  • Get a preliminary permit to incorporate a manufacturing business

    Learn the regulatory requirements for setting up a manufacturing facility. Prepare a project for the Ministry of Economy, which issues a preliminary permit once approved and also drafts a detailed list of other approvals you will require.

  • Obtain additional permissions

    Obtain approvals and permits from the relevant authorities specified in the Initial Approval, such as the Municipality, Department of Civil Defense, Planning Department, and others that oversee industrial or manufacturing business activities.

  • License and register your company

    Next you need to incorporate your chosen legal entity and confirm its address at the physical location of your proposed manufacturing facility.

  • Pass certification checks

    The certification procedure must be completed and passed. It may include laboratory tests for compliance with standards, examination by the Agency for Standardization and Metrology (ESMA), registration with the Municipality, the Department of Civil Defense and other departments.

  • Engage professional support for your business

    The final stage is engaging a service company that will provide high-quality administrative, legal, financial and tax accounting services as well as support for opening bank accounts, immigration procedures and registration of foreign employees.

SORP expert solutions for organizing a manufacturing business
in the UAE

Business model

We will select a suitable
license and determine the
type of legal entity


Fast incorporation through close
collaboration with licensing

Outsourcing of core
business processes

Administrative, tax, accounting, PRO
and legal support from SORP Group
specialists with vast experience

business address

Rent in our SORP business center
for staff accommodation and
regulatory licensing procedures

bank accounts

Our close cooperation with
UAE banks with assistance
in passing KYC speedily


Professional service from SORP
Investment LLC with waiver of
rights registered in Dubai court

Outstanding benefits of operating a manufacturing business
in the UAE

Government support

The level of support represents a golden
opportunity for manufacturing businesses.

World’s largest trading hub

Ideal assembly point between the East and
West makes logistics and trading sense.

Repatriation of Capital and Profit

Repatriate capital as tax-free foreign

Labor advantages

The UAE is an attractive destination for
medium and high grade skilled personnel.

Dedicated industrial zones

Many locations are pre-developed for
industrial use with attractuve facilities.

No customs duties

Import of raw materials is not subject to customs duties .

Ready sales market

Enjoy free trade across 6 countries of the
Gulf Cooperatoion Council (GCC).

Tax benefits

0% income tax and corporation tax. 5%
VAT for some domestic categories.

Financial incentives

Attractive business loan rates and flexible repayment terms are worth investigating.

Factors to consider when setting up a manufacturing business in the UAE

Business licences include options to sell into the local market as well as internationally. Dedicated Free Trade Zones exist to stimulate business and they offer opportunities to rent or buy land or pre-built facilities. These zones operate under varying terms & conditions, costs and regulations. Your best approach is to take expert advice, which will cover all the aspects and avoid glitches.

Choosing the best location

Consider a location’s regional incentives,
infrastructure, utilities and ease of
procuring supplies, to name just a few
important factors.

Choosing the trading area

Where do you intend to sell the products
you will manufacture? Will it be local,
export only, or both? Ensure your chosen
jurisdiction does not restrict your plans.

Getting your raw materials

Can you obtain supplies locally or will
you have to import some or all of them?
If so, ensure you have the correct permits
and that inbound logistics are smooth.

Recruiting your workforce

Investigate the local labor market for the
skills you need. Check out potential
quotas on foreign labor that might
impact your resourcing plans.

Exporting your products

Proximity of seaports/airports and ease
of logistics may be factors in choosing
your location. Local knowledge should
feed into your strategy decisions.

Getting your products certified

Before releasing a product on the
domestic market of the UAE or a GCC
country, you need to pass certification

SORP Group’s solutions for successful manufacturing businesses in the UAE

  • Business planning
    and the right model

    We help you plan and implement a properly licensed business model and solid basis for production. We guide you in creating a retail network and accessing international 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 manufacturing business to ensure it can operate freely.

  • Registration and
    licensing procedures

    We can do everything that’s needed for registration, licensing and obtaining permits quickly and without fuss using our close working relationship with government agencies.

  • Assistance with
    bank accounts

    We guarantee professional support when opening bank accounts because we work closely with leading UAE banks and understand their compliance procedures.

  • Outsourcing
    core business

    Our administrative, tax, accounting support and PRO specialists allow you to save significantly compared with employing highly paid staff to perform the same tasks.

  • Help for importing
    raw materials and

    We know the procedures for obtaining an import permit, approvals, certification and customs clearance. We guide you all the way.

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

Comprehensive services

SORP offers comprehensive support for acquired companies and their shareholders: from licensing, maintaining Bank accounts to obtaining the status of a tax resident of the country

Individual approach

Your requirements are unique. That is why we treat every business individually to tailor the right services to achieve your priorities.

15 years of successful work

We have helped thousands of clients acquire, build and develop businesses in the UAE

Banking support

Assistance in choosing a bank that is suitable for your purposes, support with bank accounts opening and passing KYC procedures (know your customer).

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