Dubai Airport Free Zone (DAFZA) was established as a free economic zone in 1996 and is one of the fastest growing free zones in the UAE, contributing 4.7 per cent of Dubai's gross domestic product. It is located at the Dubai International Airport, and spans over 170 acres. DAFZA houses several companies in the sectors of aviation and aerospace, IT and telecommunications, electronics, medicine, logistics, food and beverage, and luxury goods. This free zone is currently home to 1,600 companies from across the globe.
The inner-city DAFZ has covered a vast number of key business sectors, including IT, telecommunications, pharmaceuticals, aviation, freight, food & beverage, engineering, jewellery and cosmetics. It also provides access to 24-hour logistics services, top-class amenities, and infrastructure. The free zone also provides direct access to a number of government services.
DAFZA was developed to bring up Dubai as an investment-driven economy. It is an ideal choice for the aforementioned business domains owing to its strategic location in the heart of Dubai, convenient access to Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and Asia-Pacific regions, cutting-edge infrastructure, state-of-the-art amenities, an investor-friendly milieu, and a host of other benefits that come along with setting up a company in a free zone in the UAE. DAFZA also has the provision of several tertiary business support services like registration, banking, housekeeping, licensing, etc. on site.
Why Set Up Your Business in DAFZA?
- Provision of 100% foreign ownership
- No restriction on capital repatriation
- No import or re-export duties
- No personal income tax
- No currency restrictions
- Easy hiring of professionals
- Company ownership in foreign land
- No restriction on repatriation of capital
- Exemption on corporate taxes and duties
- World-class infrastructure
- Dedicated logistic facilities
- Permission to lease land and use it as the business need
- No restriction on foreign exchange
- Easy access to more than 200 international markets
- Easy availability of services like banking, finance, and insurance
- Quick and easy access to government services
Business Licenses Available in Dubai Airport Free Zone
Any business needs to have a license to start their operation in DAFZ, according to the planned business activity company can opt from any of the 4 licenses. They even have an option of applying for a dual-license, which allows the company to operate across Dubai. The different types of licenses are:
1. Trade License
A trade license allows the holder to carry out trading activities including export, import, re-export, distribution, and storage of specific products.
2. Industrial License
A business person who wants to start the light manufacturing industrial activities, packaging and assembling can opt for an industrial license.
3. Service Licence
A service license is exclusively for service-oriented business and enables a company to provide service specified in the license.
4. General Trading License
General activities like import, export, re-export, distribution and storage can be carried out by a general trading license holder. He/she can trade in more than 2 product categories as well.
Legal Business Entities in Dubai Airport Free Zone
For business setup in Dubai Airport Free Zone, one can choose from among the following two legal entity types:
1. Free Zone Establishment (FZE)
A Free Zone Establishment must meet the following requirements:
- The number of shareholders must be between 1 to 50 (a shareholder can be an individual or a corporate entity)
- A minimum share capital of AED 1,000
2. Branch Office
An existing company which is 100% owned by the parent company can open their branch office in DAFZ without any paid-up capital requirement.
Process of Business Setup in Dubai Airport Free Zone
Dubai Airport Free Zone Authority has maintained a simple and easy-to-understand process of company setup. It has the following 3 steps:
1. Select a Company
DAFZA offers two types of business entities: (1) Free Zone Establishment (FZE), and (2) Branch Office of an Existing Company.
After selecting the business entity, the next step would be obtaining a business license – in accordance with your business activity.
Once you decide on the type of business entity and license, you need to choose your office space. DAFZ provides a varied range of office spaces, light manufacturing units, co-working spaces, and serviced offices for business operation for rent on an annual basis.
2. Submit the Relevant Documents
Once you decide to set up a business in DAFZ, you need to submit the following documents to DAFZA:
- Application form
- Letter of intent
- Detailed business plan
- Existing company brochure (if available)
- CV and passport copy of the manager
- Annual financial report or shareholder(s) 6 months bank statement (Not applicable for a new entity)
- Copy of shareholder’s CV and passport
- No-objection letter by the current sponsor
- Initial approval(s) from the third-party in case your business requires such approvals, e.g., for media, IT, etc.
3. Collecting the Business License
Once your documents have been approved, the final steps to start your business are:
- Signing the lease agreement
- Payment of fees and collecting your business license
Business Setup Worldwide is a business advisory firm that provides expert guidance on starting a new venture in any part of the world. We help our clients identify new business opportunities, understand legal procedures, network with local authorities, and identify the right type of free zone to suit the business model. As different options are available for company formation, it is crucial to have the right kind of business knowledge in the business environment of Dubai. We at Business Setup Worldwide save your time as we take care of the lengthy procedures and guide you step by step throughout the process.
Dubai Airport Free Zone is the right place to set up your business in the industrial sector and get connected with international markets including Africa, Europe, and Asia. Business Setup Worldwide can assist you in incorporating, following legal procedures, accounting & bookkeeping, and taxation for your business in DAFZ. Contact us – it’ll be our pleasure to assist you in setting up your business in Dubai.