A regulated business without

Find out why businesses in industries that are regulated in other countries are available for
licensing in the UAE and have equal rights and opportunities for development

Presentational image for an article

The UAE presents ready-made solutions for licensing complex types of business that have come under government regulation in other countries. The licensing standards provide equal rights for all market participants and complete freedom to conduct international activities without additional financial "burdens" for businesses that are traditionally discriminated against in other countries. You have the opportunity to conduct a business for trading in oil and oil products, medicines and chemicals, gold and precious metals. You will be able to invest in or develop construction projects.

Advantages of the UAE jurisdiction for doing
international business

A legal entity in the UAE can belong to a foreign investor and freely conduct international business without entering the local market.
In addition, your company will harness all the privileges of a low-tax jurisdiction to minimize tax payments.

Favorable tax

No corporate tax or personal income tax
(although 5% VAT applies to a number of categories)

Conditions for equal

Foreign and local entrepreneurs are treated
equally both for UAE activities and foreign

Access to the
Gulf countries

All 6 countries of the GCC share a common
tax and customs space and free trade zone
making a large single market


State protection and multi-country
international agreements on mutual
protection of investments

Hassle-free capital

The state legally guarantees the free
movement of capital without currency
controls or regulations

Data concealment
and protection

Shareholder registers are secret, meaning
beneficiary concealment tools are legal and
supported by the state


Absolute stability of the banking system, no
inflation, and the US dollar exchange rate is
fixed by law

Safe repository
for funds

Secure banking and government guarantee of
the safety of funds are an important part of
promoting international and domestic trade

Tax resident

All business owners can apply for tax resident
status and receive information exchange
protection (CRS)

Licenses available for complicated activities that
are difficult to obtain in other jurisdictions

Trade in oil and oil products

Licenses for trading in oil and oil products (gasoline,
kerosene, diesel fuel, oils and other refined products)

Medicines and chemicals trading

Licenses for the sale of medicines, protective equipment
and various products of the chemical industry

Trade in tobacco products

Licenses for the sale of smoking mixtures, cigars,
cigarettes, and related products

Trade in precious metals

Licenses for the sale of ores, ingots, alloys of
precious metals, precious stones and jewelry

Investment and financial activities

Licenses for investments in related structures, real
estate and business, operations with securities,
paying agents and funds

Construction and engineering activities

Licenses for the construction of buildings and
structures of any kind, architecture and design activities,
and post-project maintenance of facilities

The uniqueness of the UAE for licensing
complicated activities

  • No additional fees

    Many highly profitable and in-demand types of activity experience additional overheads in most countries in the form of duties (excise taxes), requirements for payment of quotas, etc. There are no such obstacles in the UAE.

  • Equal rights and opportunities

    You can engage in any legal activity and at the same time have equivalent rights with local residents regardless of your nationality, religion or line of work.

  • No sanctions

    There are no artificial restrictions in the country for business people who are not on the sanctions lists (the so-called “special circle of persons”), which makes the Emirates an ideal place for entrepreneurs who want to grow, develop and make high profits in their chosen industry.

  • Tax comfort

    The country really is tax-free, allowing you to extract the maximum profit from the business. No taxes on foreign business activity, export and re-export, personal income tax or corporation tax. The only tax is 5% VAT applied to a number of domestic categories.

  • CRS information exchange protection

    When conditions are met for granting tax resident status, it means removal of tax consequences in the investor's country of origin and is an instrument of international tax planning because automatic exchange of tax information under CRS does then not apply.

International activities from a base in the United Arab Emirates

Operating a complex business under the UAE flag gives entrepreneurs the opportunity to maximize profits in both the domestic and
international markets, compared with the global average of other jurisdictions.

All you need to operate a complicated type of business in the UAE
is to incorporate a legal entity and go through the licensing

Specific features of licensing complicated
business activities in the United Arab Emirates

Offshore countries lost their financial attraction for incorporation to minimize taxes, conceal beneficiaries, and international trade
and investment after the introduction of “tax base erosion” provisions supported by the FATF.

Peculiarities of the place of incorporation

The licensing procedure in the UAE is laid down by Federal
Law but each emirate, like each Free Trade Zone created on
its territory, has local characteristics that are reflected in
regional rules and regulations, and the time taken to
complete the incorporation procedure can vary significantly.

Licensing procedure

The Economic Department (DED) of the emirate chosen for
incorporation issues licenses for local companies. In Free
Zones the administration does it. That defines the form of
legal entity that may be incorporated and some licenses
require a UAE national to hold 51% of the shares.

Additional approvals

Complicated licenses require approval of the department(s)
responsible for supervising the related areas of activity.
These can be the Construction Department (DM, BDept),
Ministry of Health (MOH), Department of Transportation
(RTA), Department of Environmental Protection (MOCCAE)
and the Central Bank (CB).

Activity permits

Close attention is paid to the safety of the premises in which
offices are located and products are stored. In some cases,
a business is obliged to hire an employee with specialized
education and experience in that industry or to be accredited
by specialized government departments. Inspections ensure
that premises have the required permit and trade license.

Renewal of licenses and permits

Annual license renewal is required after audit reports have
been submitted to the regulatory authorities, a lease agreed
for a new period, and other regulatory requirements fulfilled.
License renewal is a form of state control of business
activities and represents a hidden tax on companies.

Annual payment of fees and rent

Renewing licenses and permits to operate follows the same
procedure as initial application with the same approvals
required. The fees are a mandatory overhead for doing
business in the UAE. Other outlays may include lease
renewal, agent services and regulatory body permits.

SORP expert solutions for business licensing in
the UAE

SORP Group provides a set of licensing solutions for the main areas of business in the UAE. We guarantee a quick passage through
all procedures thanks to our long-established contacts with government departments and accreditation as a Free Trade Zone agent.

Business model

We will select a suitable license for
your chosen activities and decide
which type of legal entity to form

Incorporation and

SORP's streamlined business
processes and resources guarantee
support by qualified professionals

Local partner or

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

Dubai business

Rent space in the SORP Business
Center for accommodation and
licensing - offices, flexi-desks,
co-working and virtual solutions

Opening bank

We work closely with UAE banks,
understand their compliance rules
and facilitate KYC verification when
opening bank accounts

Business process

We provide full business support
including legal, tax, accounting and
administrative services, so you can
outsource all tasks to us

What to consider when conducting international
business from the UAE

To minimize the risks of having your international activity considered illegitimate, suspicious, or even suspended, we strongly
recommend that you comply with all legislative requirements regarding confirming Economic Presence (ESR) in the UAE.
  • The UAE’s preferential tax regime

    The UAE's preferential tax regime offers companies many opportunities to maximize profits. To fully benefit from all the advantages of this jurisdiction, you need to provide the international financial institutions and fiscal authorities of the country of your citizenship with evidence that the UAE is where management and control of your business takes place, and is the center of your vital interests.

  • Organizing a command and control center in the UAE

    A command and control center in the UAE confirms that you have a real office with staff in the Emirates. It demonstrates that all management decisions of your company are made here, shareholder meetings are held, documents circulated, transactions are concluded and, accordingly, taxes are paid here.

  • Obtaining tax resident status

    Today, the world’s banks are responsible for maintaining and sharing data according to the CRS (Common Reporting Standard) agreement. It involves the exchange of tax information between countries in real time and significantly complicates the work of companies to optimize taxes. Obtaining UAE tax resident status defines you or your company as a taxpayer of this country with reporting obligations to the local fiscal authorities.

  • Proof of UAE tax affiliation

    By obtaining tax residency, you prove that the UAE is the jurisdiction where you pay your taxes, meaning you can protect your assets from automatic exchange of information. Banks and financial institutions of the UAE will not send information outside the state (place of your confirmed residence), which will make it inaccessible for the tax authorities of your country of citizenship.

  • Protection of assets from inspections by fiscal authorities

    Complex types of activities that are regulated in other countries attract increased attention of international financial institutions, especially if such activities are accompanied by large cash flows. By obtaining a business license in the UAE and organizing a Management and Control Center here, opening a secure bank account and obtaining tax residency, you ensure the safety of your assets and business from interference by the regulatory authorities of your own country.

Take full advantage of the UAE jurisdiction to
maximize the success of your business

We will provide professional advice on the organization
of your company in the UAE.
We will select personalized solutions that meet your goals,
including optimizing your international business.

How to work in the international arena having licensed your
business in the UAE

Protection against exchange of tax information

Your tax jurisdiction affiliation must be established as being in the UAE to prevent the automatic exchange of tax information under the provisions of CRS.

Confirmation of economic presence

To prove that tax optimization of your international activities is valid abroad, you must substantiate the feasibility of using the UAE as your base of operations.

Tax planning opportunities

To optimize taxation when conducting international activities, you are strongly recommended to use the mechanisms permitted by legislation and ensure freedom of settlements.

SORP services for international business

The SORP group of companies provides entrepreneurs with a unique set of tools based on UAE legislation for effective tax planning
and optimization of international business.
  • Methodology
    and business analysis

    We will research the market, the
    competitive environment and
    specifics of legislation. We will
    select suitable areas for setting up
    and running a business.

  • PRO

    We will represent your interests
    with UAE government agencies,
    issue resident visas for business
    partners, employees and their families, and renew licenses and

  • Nominee

    We will provide a nominee director
    and shareholder to conceal the
    actual beneficiaries and enable
    intragroup transfer pricing should
    that be a requirement.

  • Audits and

    We will provide maintenance and
    audit of accounting documentation
    and generate the required report to
    confirm transactions when making
    international transfers.

  • International
    tax planning

    Tailored solutions to improve the
    efficiency of tax optimization
    schemes for international business
    based on UAE legislation, expertise
    and successful cases.

  • Confirmation of
    economic presence

    Proof that operations are managed
    and controlled at the registered address of company incorporation
    and that business operations are
    affiliated to UAE tax jurisdiction.

SORP Group will become your reliable long-term working partner in the UAE

SORP is a leading consulting group providing a full range of services for the incorporation, support and management of business in
the UAE and internationally. We have an impeccable reputation, broad capabilities and a solid asset base.

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).

Contact us on WhatsApp