Free Zone in Dubai

Free Zone in Dubai

Free zones in Dubai are some selected economic zones that provide tax concessions as well as duty-free benefits to promote economy and commerce in Dubai. There are many Free zones in Dubai which in other words are known as Free Trade Zone or FTZ in Dubai. These zones are basically operated to influence foreign investors and increase FDI here in this nation.

More than 30 free trade zones have existed in Dubai. Individual zones are operated by their respective authority and their distinct set of rules and regulations set by that free zone authority.

The Authority managing each of these FTZ manages various trade perspectives. For instance, business license preparation for any FDI program, industrial licenses, relevant industry initiation advisory assistance, etc.

How does FTZ in Dubai works?

Free zones in Dubai are managed by the respected authority of that zone. These authority bodies focus on FDI businesses and supervise incorporation processes. Moreover, they provide various subsidies and compensations during building an FDI company in those selective zones. FTZ like Jebel Ali Free Zone is one of the largest seaport in Dubai. It is also known for big subsidies policies for foreign investment companies.

FTZ like Dubai International Financial Centre is evaluated for its rapid growth in place of industrialization. The zone has a 24% growth rate. The GDP contribution of this zone is also impressive. It contributes10% of the whole nation’s GDP.

Another free zone is DMCC or the Dubai Multi Commodities Center. It has a remarkable reputation of having more than seven thousand registered companies actively operating in Dubai as per 2013 survey. This zone is rapidly progressing from an economic perspective.

Moreover, the retention rate is almost touching the 100% milestone, and the growth rate estimated to be more than 25%, which is undoubtedly remarkable. According to the 2015 trade survey, this particular free zone has contributed 12 percent of Dubai’s total GDP.

All these along with several other prime FTZ in Dubai such as the Dubai Media City, the Dubai internet City etc. are giving an impressive economic forecast in the coming years. You need to know how to start a business in Dubai. The authorities operating in each zone have already forecasted huge expansions of their trade radius by upcoming years.

What does it need to apply for a Free Zone company in Dubai?

Following are the requisitions needed to initiate free zone trade in Dubai:

  • Facing the legal attributes
  • Choose a trade name selection
  • Preparing business license
  • Office space selection
  • Governmental approvals, and company formation process recommended by the zonal authority for retrieving your business license.

Steps to register a Free Zone company in Dubai

Steps of registering a company may differ from one zone to another in Dubai, but there are some procedures and paperwork that are common in all FTZ. Below are those common procedures:

  1. The first step of company registration is to select your company type, type of license your company needs and premises that suits your business requirements.
  2. Once those are done, proceed for the registration document submission. The documents needed are company application form, Letter of intent, appropriate bank references, identification paperwork of shareholders and managers, NOC for the manager issued by the present sponsor.
  3. The final step is to collect the business license by signing the lease and appropriate payment completion.

Categorize Free Zones in Dubai

Dubai free zone has been classified under three trading systems. These are:

  1. Mainland free zones
  2. Seaport free zones
  3. Airport free zones

Cost evaluation to start a company in Dubai Free Zone

Again, the cost varies from one area to the next but expenses are strongly based upon office rental cost, warehouse lease per square meter, company registration fees and finally various license fees. Following is the list of general costs at an approximation rate:

  • Office rental cost - Approximately AED 1700 to AED 2000 ranging from 1 to 3 years of agreements + 12.5% service charge/year.
  • Warehouse lease rent - Approximately AED 1000 per square meter + 10% service charge/year.
  • Company registration fees - Approximately AED20,000 which need to be paid only once.
  • License fees – Approximately AED15,000 for almost all types of licenses needed for a company.

List of Free Zones in Dubai

Considering all these three classifications, there are more than 30 Free trading zones situated in Dubai that are providing services to entrepreneurs who reside and engaged in corporate activities in Dubai. Some of the prominent free trade zones are listed below:

  • Dubai Airport Free Zone
  • Dubai Biotechnology & Research Park
  • Dubai Academic City
  • Dubai Techno Park
  • Dubai Technology and Media Free Zone
  • International Media Production Zone
  • Jebel Ali Free Zone
  • Economic Zones World
  • Dubai South
  • Dubai Science Park
  • Dubai Car and Automotive City Free Zone
  • Dubai Design District
  • Dubai Gold and Diamond Park
  • Dubai Healthcare City
  • Dubai Industrial City
  • Dubai International Academic City
  • Dubai International Financial Centre
  • Dubai Internet City
  • Dubai Media City
  • Dubai Multi Commodities Centre
  • Dubai Outsource Zone
  • Dubai Silicon Oasis
  • Dubai Studio City
  • Dubai Logistics City
  • Dubai Knowledge Village


How many free zones are in Dubai?

There are more than 30 Free Zones operating in Dubai.

What is the most famous free trade zone in Dubai?

There are many but among those Dubai Airport Free Zone is in the top rank.

What is the charge for making a company license in the free trade zone?

You have to pay AED 15,000 for this license.

How to register a company outside the free zone in Dubai?

To know detail about company registration outside the free zone in Dubai: click here.


Company Registration Expert Since 2012