How to get your UAE trade license?


In this article, we are going to give you everything you need to know to about UAE trade license visas. These are a fantastic option for entrepreneurs looking to start a company in the UAE, and with so many activities to choose from, there is something to suit everyone.

Let’s break down exactly what you’re looking at when it comes to UAE trade license costs. The main thing to remember is that the size of your company, your chosen activity, and where you decide to set up, will have an effect on calculating your final total cost.

But there are some rough figures available to give you a general idea when you’re doing your initial planning. It’s important to remember that UAE trade license costs are fairly similar whether you decide to set up in a free zone or on the mainland.

Generally, you’re looking at approximately AED 15,000 to AED 17,000. The cost for multiple shareholders will be higher than for a single shareholder.

To get an up-to-date price, which is tailored to your specific requirements, contact Creative Zone for an accurate quote.

Before you make your trade license application, you need to understand clearly your business activity – or possibly activities. Keep in mind that, depending on the license you choose, you can often list more than one activity on your application.

At this stage, to make sure you list every activity that you intend to carry out, it’s worth engaging with a company formation specialist. They will be able to guide you through selecting your activities, noting which will be most aligned with your business and ensuring that you always remain compliant.

Next up is picking a name for your company. The UAE is fairly strict when it comes to naming companies, so it’s important to be aware of the regulations. Essentially, you must avoid any language that could be seen as offensive or blasphemous. You must avoid any name that is already held by a well-known organisation.

If you’re naming your company after yourself, ensure that you don’t abbreviate your name. So Mark Johnson Trading is fine, but M Johnson Trading is not. Of course you will also need to ensure your chosen company name is still available for you to register. This part of the process, like many others, is much smoother if you choose to set up with a company formation specialist.

So you have finalised a name and selected your activities. Now you can make your application for your trade license. For mainland setups this can be done directly to the Department of Economic Development (DED) or to the specific municipality of the emirate where you are setting up. For free zone setups, you can go directly to the managing authority of your chosen free zone. A company formation specialist can assist you with these important steps, managing the application on your behalf to ensure the entire process is stress-free.

So by putting together these documents ahead of time, by giving some thought to what you want to name your company, and considering carefully what your company is going to do and therefore what ‘activity’ it would fall under, you can start your application already well-prepared.