Last updated on March 5, 2022
DIFC is a financial hub of Dubai and provide a platform for DIFC company formation. It is a federal financial free zone and was developed according to UAE Federal Order No# 35 of 2004, UAE Federal Law No# 8 of 2004 and Dubai Law No# 12 of 2004. The DIFC reside in a physical territory of around 110 acres. The DIFC has its personal legal system and courts, independent from those of the UAE, with jurisdiction over corporate, employment, commercial, trusts, civil and safeties law matters.
DIFC company formation
The DIFC goals to provide a platform for DIFC company formation and especially financial institutions to conduct business with the emerging markets of the region. It was established with the dream of generating an background for growth, progress and economic development in the UAE, while accessing the area’s markets by providing globally recognized legal and business practice, as well as the appropriate structure keeping up with international standards.
It is an international financial center advantageously located in the middle of the Dubai. it is bounded by a area that is fast emerging and rich in natural resources and petro dollars. Joint with the tax friendly government and the unrestrictive attitude on the subject of capital repatriation and movement of funds, it offers a financial target and center that is matchless.
Benefits of Company formation in DIFC free zone
Following are the main advantages of company formation in DIFC free zone
- 100 percent foreign ownership is allowed for company formation in DIFC free zone.
- Internationally accepted laws and regulatory processes.
- Zero percent tax rate on income and profits for company formation in DIFC free zone.
- Environment for business setup in difc is dollar denominated environment.
- An extensive tax agreement network for UAE merged entities.
- An exclusively clear as crystal operating environment, meet the terms with international best practices.
- Freedom of repatriation of capital and profits for DIFC company formation.
- A world-class, self-governing, regulatory agency working alongside other financial regulatory agencies located in key international jurisdictions.
- A range of legal vehicles that may be established with capital structuring flexibility.
- An international stock exchange with primary and secondary listings of debt and equity instruments.
- A pool of skilled professionals exists in Dubai and the region.
- A responsive one stop shop service for visas, work permits and other related requirements.
- A modern and well-organized transport, communications and internet infrastructure.
Main characteristics of DIFC free zone company formation:
Following are the main characteristics of DIFC free zone company formation
|Company type||DIFC Free Zone|
|Governing corporate legislation||Dubai International Financial Centre Authority|
|Taxation||No corporate or personal taxes|
|Legislation||DIFC laws and regulations|
|Information published relating to company officers||No names are disclosed|
|Standard currency||UAE dirhams pegged to USD|
|Time to form||30 working days|
|Accounting requirement||Every company shall keep accounting records, accounting and auditing are mandatory|
|Local sponsor requirement||Not Required|
|Communication||Efficient means of communication|
|Residence visa issuance||Allowed|
|Number of directors needed||Depends on the size of the office space|
Registrar of Companies for Company setup in DIFC free zone
Registrar of Companies office is in charge for formation of companies in DIFC free zone. It also has an important role in given that information on DIFC entities.
The main functions of Registrar of Companies for company setup in DIFC free zone are:
- incorporate/setup and liquidate DIFC free zone companies;
- examine and store DIFC free zone companies information supplied under the appropriate laws and regulations;
- And make this information accessible to the public.
The role of the Registrar of Companies staff is to instruct on, review, receive and process all applications submitted by approaching DIFC registrants looking for to do company setup in DIFC free zone in accordance with the Companies Law, the Limited Liability Partnerships Law, the General Partnership Law, or Limited Partnership Law and the implementing rules and regulations applicable thereto.
Types of Entities in Dubai International Financial Center:
- Limited Liability Company – LLC – A Limited Liability Company may not become regulated by the DFSA and may not issue securities. A minimum of one member is required.
- Company Limited by Shares – LTD – A Company Limited by Shares is permitted to raise capital by offering shares as per a public offer and can issue securities. Company Limited by Shares required minimum of one shareholder.
- Limited Liability Partnership – LLP – A Limited Liability Partnership may be established by two or more shareholder who should be members of the Limited Liability Partnership. The liabilities of the members are limited to the extent of their shares in the Limited Liability Partnership.
- General Partnership – GP – A General Partnership is formed by two or more shareholder and all shareholders are jointly and separately liable without limitation, for the debts and responsibilities of the partnership.
- Recognized Company – RC – A Recognized Company is a registered branch of an existing foreign company within the DIFC. A Recognized Company is not considered to be a separate legal entity and therefore is just working as the extension of the foreign incorporated company.
- Limited Partnership – LP – A Limited Partnership is formed by two or more shareholders and must include at least one general shareholder whose liability will be unlimited and one limited shareholder whose liability shall be limited to the contribution made by it to the Limited Partnership.
- Special Purpose Companies – according to their agreement they need to be licensed to operate under the DIFC Authority.
- Pre-existing LLP, GP or LP may be registered in the DIFC free zone.
- The DIFC free zone Authority also permits foreign companies to be transferred to the DIFC (on condition that the foreign company is authorized to do so pursuant to the laws of its incorporating jurisdiction).
- Non-regulated entities are those, which are incorporated in the DIFC but are not involved in carrying on a Financial Service or are not required to be regulated pursuant to one or more of the exemptions set out in the DFSA Rulebooks. Examples of such entities include companies carrying out proprietary investments, service providers such as recruitment agencies, coffee shops, restaurants and bars, companies carrying out activities of a support or back-office nature, holding companies.
Document required for business setup in DIFC free zone
- Proof of trade name reservation
- Passport(PP) Copies for the shareholder(s)
- Proof of initial approval for the activities
- Personal Information sheet for each shareholder & manager (Prototype will be provided by Our company)
- Passport copy and C.V of the Manager
- Notarized Power of Attorney appointing Our Firm as your legal representative, So that we can act on your behalf and/or on behalf of the shareholders.(Prototype will be provided by Our company).
- Lease agreement – Lease Documents Having a physical address for your business/office is Compulsory requirement in the UAE. The rent in average within the free zone area is US$ 25 up to US$ 45 per sq. / ft. (US$ 225 up to US$ 400 per sq. /m.). Our company can assist you while searching for your Physical address.
- Also during the process, it might be a requirement for a few other documents by the authorities
- There are some activities which might require third party / authority pre approval – accordingly additional Cost and professional fees might be applicable.
Additional Documents required for a corporate shareholder
- Board resolution to be resolute by the board of directors for your existing firm at place of origin stating intent of establishing a new setup abroad. Must be notarized and attested by the U.A.E Embassy.(Prototype will be provided by Our company)
- Notarized and Attested Memorandum of Association / Article of Association. It must be attested from the UAE Embassy at the place of origin.
- Certificate of incorporation – if applicable – for your existing company, license your existing organization notarized and attested by the U.A.E Embassy.
Cost of Dubai International Financial Centre
|Trade License option / activity||Cost in AED|
|Industrial License||AED 9,475|
|Specific Trading||AED 9,475|
|Oil & Gas||AED 12,600|
|Real Estate||AED 18,700|
|General Trading License||AED 18,725|
|Specific Services||AED 9,400|
|Oil & Gas||AED 12,600|
|Freight Forwarding||AED 10,600|
|Real Estate||AED 18,800|
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