Licences in Abu Dhabi

There are a variety of trade licenses in Abu Dhabi to cater to different business activities. The Abu Dhbai Department of Economic Development (ADDED) are responsible for issuing all mainland Abu Dhabi trade license. An Abu Dhabi trade license is generally valid for one year. A Abu Dhabi trade license is required for any company that wishes to work in the Oil & Gas industry in Abu Dhabi - particularly with ADNOC.

About various licences in Abu Dhabi

The licences available in for Abu Dhabi business set up are similar or the same as Dubai and the wider UAE. The most common type of licenses for Abu Dhabi includes

  • Trade License
  • Commercial License
  • Industrial License
  • Professional License
  • Branch License

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The benefits range from license to license but it will depend on your business structure and the activities your company will engage in as what license you will require.

For example, a general trade license is relevant only to businesses who intend to import and export goods outside of the UAE.

Below outlined a few benefits of each of some of the above-named licenses:

Trade License

  • More credibility
  • Better exposure to financial aid
  • Ease of goods trading including import and export of goods

Commercial License

  • Allows you to trade
  • Import and export goods in, out and within the UAE
  • Tax exemptions and double taxation treaties
  • Selling of several goods
  • Prospects for foreign trade

Commercial licenses are the umbrella for more specific activity licenses such as the service license, which is specifically aimed at activities including flooring, tiling, carpentry, installation, cleaning, etc.

Industrial License

  • Government will help provide land at a reduced rate to establish manufacturing unit
  • Bills including water and electricity will be available at a reduced rate
  • Innovative products can receive loans easier and at reduced interest rates

What is the process to obtain a license in Abu Dhabi?

The documentation required may vary slightly per license and there are a few key steps to setting up your business license in Abu Dhabi.

To simplify, the key steps include:

  1. Trade name reservation
  2. Selecting legal form of license for your company
  3. Select your business activities and define what you company will do/provide
  4. Confirm license information is correct based on your selections
  5. Obtaining approvals of authorities
  6. Issuance of License

How can we help?

It can a difficult space to navigate which license is appropriate for your business. PRO Partner Group can assist you with defining the activities of your company and based on this assessment, recommend the appropriate license for your business.


Abu Dhabi Licences - FAQs
What is the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development?

The Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED or DED) is a mainland business licenses regulator. DED regulates the business sector and leads economic growth in Abu Dhabi.

What is the UAE PASS?

The application UAE PASS is a trusted digital identity solution in the UAE available for all citizens, residents, and visitors. It allows service providers to authenticate your identity via smartphone as well as digitally sign and validate documents. This is a useful tool for all but especially your trusted PRO and company formation provider to be able to assist you with licensing, visa and more.

What is an agricultural license?

An Agricultural License is issued to owners of agricultural farms, animal production or sea product.

What are the documents required for a Limited Liability Company license?

  • A signed application form for issuing trade name
  • Valid passport copy
  • Valid Emirates ID copy
  • Family records extract

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