WHY SET UP
IN A FREEZONE

What are the Benefits of Setting Up in a Freezone?


* Please note that this is a general overview summary and is provided on an information only basis, non of the contents constitute advice. Specific activities, corporate structures and jurisdictions may differ and processes at government departments are subject to change without notice. PRO Partner Group (PPG) accepts no liability for actions undertaken by recipients of this information. Please speak to a member of the PPG team if assistance or any clarification is required and for any specific Company or Individual PRO assistance enquiry

**Other Factors:

- Onshore branch will need to register with Immigration and Labour to set up its own company files (after incorporation)
- Onshore branch will need to register with Ministry of Economy and take on a local audit firm (after incorporation)
- PRO Partner Group (PPG) can assist with all relevant visa and immigration assistance for all types of company formation

*
Limited Liability Company (LLC)
Onshore Branch / Rep Office
Freezone Company or Branch

Ownership

51% (Local Partner) / 49% (Foreign Party) 100% Owned by Foreign Company 100% Owned by Foreign Company

Local Agent / Local Partner

PRO Partner Group (PPG) - Local Partner PRO Partner Group (PPG) - Local Agent Free Zone - Local Agent

Client access

Can do business with all companies in Abu Dhabi & the UAE
All activity types, products and services
Can do business with all companies in Abu Dhabi
All service activities possible. Trading activities restricted
Can only do business with companies within the same Free Zone
A dual licence onshore is possible to cover certain activities

Government access

Will prequalify for Government projects and work Will prequalify for Government projects and work Limited Government work access

ADNOC access (SPC approval)

Available on application Available on application Not generally possible

Other regulatory bodies

Available on application Available on application Not generally possible

Import and Trading

Can import and trade fully within in the UAE - within their activity range Can import to the UAE . Cannot wholesale or retail trade. Can bring in samples, office equipment or spare parts only Cannot import or trade in the UAE or with UAE counterparties - must use an onshore agent

Office locations

Anywhere in the same Emirate
A minimum 14 sq. mtr / 200 sq.ft office is mandatory
Anywhere in the same Emirate
A minimum 14 sq. mtr / 200 sq.ft office is mandatory
Office costs in the Freezone are generally much higher than onshore locations. Some Free Zones offer a low cost 'virtual office' for 1 or 2 visas

Visa issuance

Applications direct to Immigration. Any issues can be resolved direct with immigration Applications direct to Immigration. Any issues can be resolved direct with immigration Immigration application is through Free Zone. The Free Zone controls the process with Immigration

Labour department

Must be registered with Ministry of Labour, pay staff through WPS and provide health insurance Must be registered with Ministry of Labour, pay staff through WPS and provide health insurance There is no Ministry of Labour registration in the Free Zone, so staff with a Free Zone visa cannot strictly work onshore in the UAE without special permission

Timeframe

Around 30 days, assuming all documents are in place from the Foreign Company and authorised person is available to sign Around 30 days, assuming all documents are in place from the Foreign Company and authorised person is available to sign Dependent on Free Zone and issuance of GM Visa - estimate around 21 days, assuming all documents are in place

AED

  AED

Government licence fees

AED 15,000 - approx. based on activities
Full DED Licence with Chamber of Commerce Licence
AED 20,000 - approx. based on activities
Full DED Licence with Chamber of Commerce Licence
AED 17,000 - based on 2 activities in an average Free Zone
Free Zone Licence Fees - Not DED or Chamber of Commerce

Ministry of Economy

AED 3,000 Set up fee AED 10,000 fee (plus AED 50,000 refundable deposit) Not applicable

Office costs

Mandatory. Variable based on location:
Abu Dhabi AED 30,000 pa upwards for minimal space
Dubai approx. AED 50,000 pa
Mandatory. Variable based on location:
Abu Dhabi AED 30,000 pa upwards for minimal space
Dubai approx. AED 50,000 pa
Small physical office space can be around AED 80,000 pa
Hot desk or virtual offices in some Free Zones for circa AED 15,000 pa

Other costs to consider

Set up fees - PRO Service Fees
Legal Drafting Fees
Local Partner Fees
Annual Renewal Fees
Set up fees - PRO Service Fees
Legal Drafting Fees
Local Partner Fees
Annual Renewal Fees
Set up fees - PRO Service Fees
Legal Drafting Fees
Free Zone Service Fees
Annual Renewal Fees

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