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All About Your Mainland Company In Dubai

January 23, 2023
Amal Eeckhout
mainland company set up

The Strategic Advantage of Establishing a Mainland Company in Dubai

Dubai, a vibrant and rapidly growing business hub, offers a wealth of opportunities for entrepreneurs and companies. Among the various options available, setting up a mainland company stands out for its numerous benefits and strategic advantages. This blog post delves into the key benefits and essential steps in establishing a mainland company in Dubai.

Unparalleled Market Access

Gateway to International Business

One of the primary benefits of a mainland company in Dubai is the access it provides to a vast and expanding market. Dubai, known for its role as a global trade and business center, offers mainland companies a strategic location and state-of-the-art infrastructure. This positioning is ideal for businesses aiming to tap into international markets.

Tax-Friendly Environment

The UAE's tax regime is exceptionally favorable for businesses. Mainland companies in Dubai benefit from the absence of personal and corporate income taxes, making it a financially attractive location for business setup.

Engaging with the Local Market

Direct Trade Opportunities

A significant advantage of mainland companies over free zone entities is their ability to directly engage in the local market. Mainland companies in Dubai can freely trade and conduct business with other local entities and consumers, which is crucial for those seeking to establish a long-term foothold in the region.

Broad Scope of Business Activities

Mainland companies in Dubai are not restricted to specific business activities, unlike their free zone counterparts. This flexibility allows for a diverse range of business ventures and expansions.

Steps to Establish a Mainland Company in Dubai

Initial Planning and Legal Framework

  • Identify Business Activity: Clearly define the nature of your business to adhere to local regulations.
  • Choose a Legal Form: Decide on the legal structure of your business, whether as a sole proprietorship, partnership, or corporation.

Navigating the Legalities

  • Trade Name Registration: Register your business name, ensuring it aligns with UAE naming conventions.
  • Local Sponsorship: For certain business activities, partnering with a local sponsor who holds a majority interest may be required.

Regulatory Compliance

  • Obtain Necessary Licenses: Secure the relevant licenses from the Department of Economic Development (DED) and other regulatory bodies.
  • Fulfill Documentation Requirements: Prepare and submit all required legal documents, such as the Memorandum of Association.

Finalizing Setup

  • Office Space Requirements: Secure a physical office space, a requirement for mainland companies in Dubai.
  • Opening Bank Accounts and Finalizing Setup: Establish your financial infrastructure by opening corporate bank accounts and completing any remaining administrative tasks.
setup mainland company

Detailed Guide to Establishing a Mainland Company in Dubai

Embarking on the journey of setting up a mainland company in Dubai is a strategic decision for businesses aiming to capitalize on the thriving market and robust infrastructure of the UAE. This comprehensive guide outlines the key steps and important considerations in the process.

Step-by-Step Process of Mainland Company Formation

1. Selecting Business Activity and Trade Name

  • Business Activity: Choose an activity that aligns with your company's goals and is approved by relevant authorities.
  • Trade Name: Select a unique name that adheres to the UAE's naming conventions.

2. Registration and Licensing

  • Department of Economic Development (DED): Register your company with the DED.
  • Trade License: Obtain the necessary trade license, which varies based on your business activity.

Navigating Approvals and Permits

3. Securing Necessary Approvals

  • Tenancy Contract: Secure a lease agreement as proof of your business location.
  • Government Approvals: Obtain approvals from agencies like the Ministry of Health and Prevention, Dubai Municipality, and Dubai Civil Defense, depending on your business sector.

4. VAT Registration

  • Federal Tax Authority (FTA): Register for VAT if your taxable supply exceeds the set threshold.

Understanding Ownership and Legal Framework

5. Foreign Ownership Restrictions

  • Ownership Limitation: In most sectors, foreign investors can own up to 49% of the business, with the majority share held by a UAE national.

Conclusion: Benefits and Legal Compliance

Setting up a mainland company in Dubai offers access to a vast market, a favorable tax environment, and state-of-the-art infrastructure. However, it's crucial to:

  • Consider Ownership Restrictions: Be aware of the limits on foreign ownership.
  • Comply with Laws and Regulations: Ensure adherence to all legal requirements.


  • Consult Professionals: Engage with legal and financial experts for guidance and compliance assurance.

Emifast: Facilitating Your Business Setup in Dubai

At Emifast, we are committed to making your journey of setting up a mainland company in Dubai as seamless as possible. Our team of experts is ready to guide you through each step, ensuring compliance and maximizing your business potential in the UAE.