Starting a Business in the UAE: Why Dubai Is a Popular Destination

Why does the world consider Dubai the favourite destination to start a business? This beautiful city is an active business hotspot with one of the largest ports in the world, connecting 140 ports across 6 continents.

The city also has a vibrant cosmopolitan culture where people from across the globe come to work and live for generations. This is a safe and politically stable city with 365 days of sunshine, 24/7 transportation access, a skilled workforce, world-class infrastructure and a thriving business ecosystem.

All you need is a business mindset and a great idea to set up a business in Dubai. Ranked among the top 5 global cities for entrepreneurs, Dubai provides resources, infrastructure, transportation, consumers and, above all, a stable business environment in which to operate.

In this article, we’ll discuss both the reasons why Dubai is such a popular destination for business and how to start a business in the UAE.

Secure Environment

The UAE is among one of the safest countries in the world to do business. With low crime rates, zero political agitation and highly efficient police forces, Dubai is a very safe city, promising high standards of stability and security.

Global risk management companies have often quoted the country as the country with the highest security parameters in Asian and Pacific countries. All these factors contribute to the city being a perfect choice for business. You can set up your business in Dubai without a second thought due to its highly stable and secure environment.

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Efficient Air and Water Logistics

As a city situated at the crossroads of the East and West, Dubai has always been a popular trade location for many countries around the world. Due to its geographical location, the city is very much favoured by traders and has one of the busiest ports in the world. For example, Dubai’s Jebel Ali port is the largest port in the Middle East with access to over 2 billion people across six continents.

The port also acts as a gateway for more than 90 shipping services connecting around 140 ports in the world, including some of the world’s largest markets like China and India. Similarly, the country also has highly efficient air cargo and transportation facilities; with two busy airports, the city is also the proud owner of one of the world’s largest cargo hubs.

The new Al Maktoum International airport at Dubai World Central is expected to be the world’s largest airport with a multi-model logistic hub and a capacity of 160 million passengers and 12 million tons of cargo per year once it starts operating at full capacity. 

In short, city leaders are looking to make Dubai the next multi million business hub for all kinds of products, services and solutions. If you are a business owner planning to set up a business in Dubai, this is the right time to make your dreams a reality. 

Transportation Facilities

Anyone who has been to Dubai will have no trouble accepting the fact that the city has one of the best infrastructures in the world. With 14 lane high-speed highways, disciplined traffic and centralised monitoring systems, Dubai’s roadways are not only efficient but also some of the safest. In addition, the Dubai metro is also the world’s largest automated driverless train system that spans over 70km of magnetic tracks.

The city’s visionary leaders are aiming to connect all major population, industrial and trade zones across the UAE through roads and railways. The government has also invested $12 billion in the development of a 500km road network with 120 multilevel interchanges.

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Human And Natural Resources

Dubai is a multicultural, cosmopolitan city with professionals from 200 different countries. Any business owner who wishes to set up business in Dubai will have no trouble finding a workforce from veteran professionals to young interns for every sector.

There are flourishing industries in the city that range from IT, healthcare, engineering, design and academics. As the UAE is famous for its petroleum, natural gas, crude oil & other petrochemical products, all these products are easily available at economical prices. 

The city also has an uninterrupted electricity and water connection that is available at all times for both companies and residents. 

Free Zone Trading And Businesses

One of the biggest things that sets Dubai and the entire UAE apart from its competition is its many free zones and the favourable business environment it supports. The country has more than 45 free zones and 30 of those are located in Dubai. 

Due to their tax-free economy and the possibility for 100% foreign ownership, free zones are the preferred option for most foreign investors. As Dubai is a city that has always favoured commodity trading and financial resources, the two most popular free zones in the city are the DMCC and DIFC. 

  • Dubai Multi Commodities Centre Authority or DMCC: Dubai’s dedicated commodities marketplace. This free zone offers an industry-specific market infrastructure for gold, diamonds, pearls, base metals, tea, coffee, spices and agro-commodities. The DMCC Free Zone authority offers a number of valuable business incentives and services in addition to land resources allocated for operation purposes. 
  • Dubai International Financial Centre or DIFC: another free zone that provides hundreds of opportunities to businessmen with financial acumen. It is the preferred location for many financiers, accountants and investors. The free zone possesses a dedicated financial exchange, Dubai NASDAQ, which competes with other global financial hubs like New York, London, Singapore and Hong-Kong. With its world-class and independent regulations, DIFC boasts a completely transparent operating environment in compliance with the best global practices.

Set Up Your Company in Dubai

Are you convinced that Dubai is the best choice for your company? The legal requirements to start an online business in the UAE (or a physical one!) depend on where you choose to start your business (mainland, offshore or free zone) and your sector. If you’re interested in learning about how to start a business in a UAE free zone, consult with our experts today.

Written by

Adrian Oton

CEO, Europe Emirates Group 

UAE Setup Guide

Business Formation
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