trade licenses dubai

Trade Licenses Dubai

There are many types of trade licenses in Dubai for companies to choose from based on the business and its activities. Issuance of the trade licenses Dubai is part of the company registration process in Dubai with the Department of Economic Department (DED) for mainland companies or the relevant free zone Authority.

About various licenses in Dubai

A trade licence is the most essential document required to operate as a business in the United Arab Emirates. The Department of Economic Development (DED) of each Emirate approves and issues all registrations and trade licences.

Trade licence in UAE:

  • Commercial Licence
  • Professional Licence
  • Industrial Licence
  • Tourism Licence

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Below are the 4 types of trade licence in UAE:

Commercial Licence – A commercial licence is granted to trading companies and companies who are importing and exporting physical products.

Professional Licence – This kind of licence is issued to companies providing a service-based activity, for example, consultants and training providers.

Industrial Licence – Businesses that involve manufacturing and production of goods on a larger scale require such a licence.

Tourism Licence – Providers who offer travel and tour packages, hotel rentals and holiday home rentals are required to apply for a tourism licence to operate in the UAE.

  • Local and International trade
  • Tax-free benefits
  • Easy to sponsor dependants
  • Variety and number of products permitted to trade


The following documents must be presented to the Trade License and Commercial Registration Department within the Department of Economic Development (DED) when applying for a trade license in Dubai:

  • Application form which must be filled out and signed by the company’s legal representative.
  • The company’s statutory documents, both in original and copy
  • The letters from the DED with the approval of the company name and attesting the approval for setting up the company
  • Tenancy Agreement
  • Shareholders details (passport copies etc).


How can we help?

With direct access to government departments and ministries and on-the-ground experts in each department, PRO Partner Group will streamline business setup and provide ongoing support and administration. We will ensure the job gets done in the right way from the start. Our highly recommended services include:

Licences and Registration:

  • Commercial Licence application, amendment, and renewals
  • Application and assistance in relation to share transfers
  • Ministry of Labour quotas, applications, and assistance
  • Department of Immigration applications
  • Mission Visas for short term project work
  • Acquiring and renewing regulatory approvals and licences

Visas and Individual processes:

  • Visa processing, renewal, and cancellation
  • Resident, family, and employee visas
  • Stamping certificates from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • Extension of visit visas
  • VIP services for medicals
  • Form completion for Emirates ID cards
  • Application for refund of bank guarantees by Ministry of Labour
  • Refunds of deposits made at Immigration Department
  • Driving licence applications and assistance
  • UAE Saudi visa

Our PRO and Government Liaison specialists can provide specialised solutions that help your company get off the ground faster and easier. We can assist your company in a variety of ways, such as document typing and clearing and visa application and processing. We always ensure that every step is taken to accelerate the application and deliver outstanding results.

Dubai Trade Licenses - FAQs
How many activities can be listed on my trade license?

The Dubai DED has various different categories of business activities available under the trading, services and industrial section. A company license is allowed to have a maximum of 10 activities on their business license if chosen from the same group, if you are choosing activities from different groups then it is necessary to ensure the nature of the business activities that you intend to add is similar as the DED does not allow to mix activities from different groups.

Can I obtain a trade license in Dubai even if I am a foreigner?

Foreign Investors can obtain trade licenses in Dubai if they have registered companies here.

Do I need a trade license for each category of goods if my company sells various products in Dubai?

The trading license will list all the activities of your company if you want to sell goods in Dubai.

Who needs a general trading license?

Companies with import and export activities involving textiles, furniture, foodstuff, and electronics, to give a few examples, require having a general trading license.

What is an Instant Licence?

The Department of Economic Development (DED) in Dubai launched the Instant Licence initiative in 2018 to help boost UAE economy by attracting new investors into the market and making it easier and quicker to set up commercial licence in the mainland UAE. An Instant Licence is processed almost immediately through a digital portal, allowing for commercial licences to be issued in 5 to 10 minutes.

What is an E-Trader License?

The new E-Trader Licence allows UAE residents to set up a Licence without the requirement of a Local Sponsor or National Service Agent and at significant reduced cost.

This is a new development and an ideal cost-effective solution for single business owners looking to setup a licence to sell professional services and products through their social media.

The E-Trader Licence does not require an office space meaning business owner can work from home. There are some limitations however in regards to trading of physical products/goods (this type of activity is available for GCC nationals only.)

Benefits :

You own the company 100% yourself – this is a ‘sole trader’ structure

No Local Sponsor or National Service Agent is required

No office space is required

You can obtain up to 3 employment visas if required

Limitations :

The Licence offers a variety of activities, however trading related activities (for example selling physical goods or products) are available for GCC nationals only.

A maximum of 3 x visas are available with this licence.

Applicant must have a valid passport, UAE residence visa and Emirates ID.

Must be able to provide an Ejari and Makani number from the Emirate of Dubai.

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