If you are looking for a list of the UAE’s top seven free zones, you are on the right page. The UAE is now recognized as the hub for foreign promoters in setting up business in the UAE’s top seven free zones. It is also the most feasible and incentivizing place for business investors because free zones in the UAE offer lucrative tax exemptions, several incentive schemes, and more.
Having a business branch or a new company formation in the free zones in UAE is an economical, cost-effective, and revenue-generating decision.
The UAE’s top seven free zones provide industry-specific infrastructure. Your target audience knows that their business solution is in the UAE free zone. Isn’t this bliss for businesses to have walk-in clients? You will have clarity reading ‘TVG UAE’s top seven free zones guide’. We would appreciate having your queries answered if you have any. Please read our guide on the UAE’s top seven free zones that start after this sentence.
Why is it advantageous setting up business in the UAE’s top 7 free zones?
General Benefits Free Zones in UAE
- Full foreign ownership of your business
- No imposition of Income Tax and Corporate Tax
- Imports and Exports duties waived-off
- 100% Repatriation of Capital and Profits
- Eligible to reap benefits Strategic location
- New flexible Trade Reforms make business set-up simple and quick
- Industry-specific free zones with world-class infrastructure
7 Best Free Zones in the UAE
Jebel Ali Free Zone Authority (JAFZA)
JAFZA free zone is vital for Logistics and private Industrial Parks. It is the first ISO-accredited free zone and has ISO 9001:2000 certification. It is reputed for being a customer-centric free zone that provides businesses with a favourable growth environment. It flagships as the free zone of Dubai Ports.
- Excellent communication, Infra, and Business Support Services
- Facilitates with readymade warehouses along with leasing option
- No minimum capital, currency restriction,
- Shareholder’s liability limited to the extent of shareholding
- Strategic positioning ports ship transit to & fro – South & West Asia, Africa, Singapore, and other locations.
- Permits Licencing – trading, service, industrial, and e-commerce.
- Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC)
The DMCC free zone in UAE is popularised as the only free zone which allows trading in precious metals, gold, diamonds, etc. It permits service, industrial, and general trading, including crypto commodities trading. It received recognition by the Financial Times as the Global Free Zone of the Year in 2017.
- No currency restrictions & levy of personal and corporate tax
- 100% foreign business ownership and capital repatriation
- Global ranked free zone
- Networks 13000 + registered businesses across 170 nations
- Proximity to Jebel Ali Harbour and the Expo 2020 area
- Apex trade and commerce contributor in Dubai
- Allows holding 6 business activities under a single licence
- Permits dual licensing
The eligibility criteria to have a dual licence, the investor needs to obtain a DMCC licence and a mainland licence.
International Free Zone Authority (IFZA)
IFZA is a prospering free zone in the UAE. It has strategic location vantage and option economical company setup. This makes it one of the most potent free zones for business opportunities and growth. The International Free Zone Authority offers trade licences to investors that include – consulting, service, e-commerce, commercial, and trading licence.
Its non-mandate physical office requirement attracts online business investors to set up businesses in IFZA. Thus, this makes it a convenient spot for business branch formation.
Fujairah Creative City Free Zone
Fujairah Creative City Free Zone in UAE is the booming media hub that allows the set up of other business sectors like- consulting, marketing events, education, and more. It is one of the prominent free zones in the UAE with virtual office options. It is reputed as the growth-pacing media-free zone in the MENA region with flexible business setup options.
- Only free zone that permits single trade to have 20 visas
- Allows Company formation without investor and staff visa requirement
- Economy boosting free zone
- Fewer documentation formalities
- Economical visa solutions
Sharjah Media City Free Zone (Shams)
SHAMS UAE Free Zone was established in 2017 and is popular as a cost-effective business setup location. Besides Media Business, SHAMS also allows the business set-up of service, trading, industrial, freelancing, and issues licences including the holding licence.
- Prompt and easy business/branch setup process
- No minimal upfront and renewal costs.
- Permits to select LLC company formation or branch set up.
- Allows registration without document attestation.
Sharjah Publishing City Free Zone (SPCFZ)
SPCFZ is a promising free zone in the UAE with abundant opportunities. It is the first Publishing and Printing UAE free zone in the world and caters to business needs facilitating world-class infrastructure.
Apart from Printing and Publishing, SPCFZ free zone in UAE allows IT-related businesses, e-commerce, consulting, and trading activities.
The most outstanding advantage of investment in Sharjah Publishing City Free Zone in UAE is that it allows foreign promoters to have five business activities without additional charge. The benefit of dual licensing is also allowed in SPCFZ and allows investors to obtain dual licences.
SPCFZ permits three company structures –
- Free Zone Establishment (FZE)
- Free Zone Company (FZC)
- Branch Company
Ras Al Khaimah Economic Zone (RAKEZ)
RAKEZ is one of the most preferred UAE free zones for business setup. It’s a strategic location that attracts investments. It’s near the seaport and the Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) airport.
It is the core manufacturing free zone in UAE that offers customizable warehouses and industrial lands. One of the largest UAE Free Zones, RAKEZ permits the set-up of categorised industries like e-commerce, manufacturing, commercial, and education.
Benefits RAKEZ Free Zone
- 100% foreign ownership
- Fast and efficient business set-up processes
- Wide-ranging business and industrial facilities
- On-site labour accommodation
- A Single stop for government services
- Connects to logistical hubs and superhighways
- Access ease to markets across the Middle East, North Africa, Europe, and Asian regions
After reading TVG’s guide on the UAE’s top seven free zones, the investors will have an insight into UAE’s top seven free zones to invest in.