Dubai, one of the most cosmopolitan and affluent cities in the Middle East, has long drawn investors to develop their business. In the past few decades, the liberal and investor-friendly policies by the government have made the city the leading destination for all categories of business.

In Dubai, there are three types of jurisdictions – Mainland, Free Zone, and Offshore where you can develop your business. Ultramodern infrastructure with pre-built office spaces, warehouses, and factories along with favourable laws have made Limited Liability Company or LLC setup in Dubai the most preferred type of business.

What is an LLC in Dubai?

In an LLC setup in Dubai, you require a minimum of 2 and a maximum of 50 shareholders to establish the business. There are many sectors on which you can operate the business except banking, insurance and money investment and your liability to the company remains limited to the number of shares owned by you.

For an LLC setup in Dubai, you also require a local Emirati sponsor acting as a silent partner and would hold 51 per cent stake in the company. As an expatriate investor, you can keep a maximum of 49 per cent of shares. After you complete all the legal proceedings involved in setting up the LLC, the silent partner will confirm that he has no involvement in the company through an agreement in the court. LLC company in Dubai also has the choice of trading anywhere within the jurisdiction of UAE or extended Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states.

How do you setup an LLC in Dubai?

There are some simple and convenient steps which you need to follow for LLC setup in Dubai. Select a suitable name and the activities in which you are going to operate the company.

Next, you need a preferable location for maximum turnover in your business. Select an area close to markets for easy transportation of products if you will be dealing in commodities. For a trading business, an area close to the port is preferable.

When the name and location of LLC are ready, you can concentrate on gathering necessary documents for the approval of LLC and submit them to the Department of Economic Development (DED) office in Dubai. You also require appropriate visa and labour cards for running the business.

Finally, you need to obtain Trade License, Memorandum of Association (MOA), Certificate of Incorporation, and Share Certificate to start operating your LLC in Dubai.

What are the documents necessary for LLC setup in Dubai?

You need certified passport copies of all your shareholders, NOC letter from the Emirati sponsor, registration application form from the office of DED, initial approval from the DED, trade name reservation certificate, tenancy agreement for your office space, warehouse or factory (attested by the Planning Department and Civil Défense Department of Dubai municipality), and Memorandum of Association (MOA) duly attested from the public notary.

You also need to get these documents attested by your home country consulate. Agreement copies should also be translated to Arabic before submitting to the Sovereign.

These were a few essential tips for setting up an LLC in Dubai. Since the government has a liberal approach to investors, particularly Indian investors, it does not interfere much in the company proceedings. It makes it worthwhile of Indian investors and entrepreneurs to start a business venture in Dubai.