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Mainland Company Formation in Dubai

Mainland Company Formation in Dubai and the UAE

Over the years, more and more people decide to start a Mainland Company Formation in Dubai and the United Arab Emirates, due to the many benefits that it brings when doing business. New entrepreneurs see in Dubai and the UAE the opportunity to make favorable long-term investments, achieving eventually, growth, and expansion of their economic power.

In this article, you will learn everything you need to know about the Mainland Company Formation in Dubai. At the same time, you will learn about the services of local agents, the costs of opening a Company in Dubai, and the economic benefits you might get from a Mainland Business Setup in Dubai.

  1. What is a Mainland Company in Dubai?
  2. How to start a company in the United Arab Emirates?
  3. What is the cost of a Business Setup in Dubai?
  4. Who are the local service agents in Dubai?
  5. Benefits of opening a Mainland Company in the UAE
  6. Differences between a Business Setup in Dubai and a Company in the Free Zones
  7. How can we help you to obtain more information about the Mainland Company Formation process?

1. What is a Mainland Company in Dubai?


Firstly, Mainland companies in Dubai are those that have a license to operate from the Department of Economic Development corresponding to the Arab Emirate where the company is located.

This license allows you to do business, both in the local market and outside the UAE, without any restrictions.

2. How to start a company in Dubai and the United Arab Emirates?

2.1 Establish the productive activity

The first thing you must have for a successful Mainland Company Formation in Dubai or opening a company in dubai is the productive activity to which you are going to dedicate yourself, this will define the type of license to which you must apply.

There are six types of professional licenses: Industrial, occupational, agricultural, commercial, tourism, and professional.

The United Arab Emirates has more than two thousand productive activities to choose from, and companies can engage in more than one activity at a time.

2.2 Choose the legal form

After defining the productive activity, you must apply for a legal form, to identify possible laws or regulations within the UAE.

An investor can choose between the following legal forms:

  • General partnership
  • Limited partnership
  • Public Joint Stock (PJSC)
  • Private Joint Stock (PrJSC)
  • Limited Liability Companies (LLC)
  • Civil Company
  • GCC Company Branch
  • Foreign Company Branch
  • Local Company Branch
  • Free Zone Company Branch
  • Holding Companies
  • Establishment only

 2.3 Register the brand name

Every Mainland Business Setup in Dubai must have a distinguishable name that represents the essence of the services offered.

Investors can register the name through the Department of Economic Development of the relevant Arab Emirate.

Things to consider before registering your brand name:

  • The name must contain, at the end of it, the acronym of the chosen legal form. These can be: LLC, EST, PJSC, PrJSC
  • Must represent the moral values and public order of the country, accordingly
  • It has to be related to the chosen productive activity
  • Names of religions or any political entity are not allowed
  • Cannot be previously registered

During the application process, you will be given a receipt or a transaction number, which will be used as a reference when you pay.

It is important to note that the Economic Development Department corresponding to the area where the Mainland Company is located will be in charge of registering the trade name. While the Ministry of Economy registers the trademark. Also, the trade name certificates are renewable.

2.4 Initial approval

Reaching this point means that the Government does not present problems for another Mainland Company Formation in Dubai.

This allows you to continue the steps to open the company, however, you still cannot carry out the chosen productive activity.

Those foreign investors interested in setting up a Mainland Company in Dubai or the UAE must obtain approval from the General Directorate of Residency and Foreign Affairs before receiving initial approval.

Another key point is that some productive activities may require other types of approvals directly related to the type of business it is.

This may include activities related to legal affairs, security affairs, and financial securities and commodities.

2.5 MOA and LSA

Depending on the legal form of the company, a Memorandum of Association must be completed or signed, or a Local Service Agent in Dubai must be hired to carry out certain procedures.

The memorandum of association is required for the following businesses: Limited partnership, Limited Liability Companies (LLC), Public Joint Stock (PJSC), and Private Joint Stock Company (PrJSC)

At the present time: The courts, law firms in the United Arab Emirates, and public notaries make and certify the Memorandum of Association.

2.6 Choose the location of your company

In the UAE, all companies are required to have a Business Center to operate, and all must be governed by the requirements of the corresponding Department of Economic Development.

In addition to this, investors must provide rental agreements for offices and warehouses. Some Emirates require these agreements to be certified.

2.7 Get additional approval from government entities

For the exercise of certain productive activities, the approval of the corresponding Ministry of the UAE is required. Below you can see the Ministries and their activities:

  • Ministry of Interior: Grants permits for activities related to general transportation and driving schools, security systems, car rental
  • Ministry of Justice: legal activities and consultancies
  • Local Municipal Department: Infrastructure and engineering activities
  • Telecommunications and Digital Government Regulatory Authority (TDRA): Activates related to telecommunications
  • Executive Council: Tourism, travel, car clubs, foreign company branches, ship, and maritime agencies
  • Ministry of Economy: Insurance activities and insurance consultancies
  • Local Health Department: Activities related to health care
  • Supreme Petroleum Council: Operations related to the extraction of oil and gas

2.8 Get your business license

After completing the above steps, you can get your license at the service centers of the Departments of Economic Development.

To obtain your license you must present the following documents:

  • Receipt of initial approval and all previously registered documents
  • Memorandum of association duly certified (for all types of companies)
  • The approval of the other government entities according to the productive activity
  • Contractual agreement duly certified by the local service agent in Dubai
  • Copy of the lease contract duly certified by The Real Estate Regulatory Agency (RERA) in Dubai

The license payment must be made within a period not exceeding 30 days, otherwise, the license application will be canceled. Finally, the licenses have an expiration period, so you must renew your license every year, So yes these are the process for Company formation in Dubai 

3. What is the cost of a Business Setup in Dubai Mainland?


The cost of the Mainland Company Formation in Dubai will depend on various circumstances, such as the type of productive activity carried out, the approval and certificates required, and the jurisdiction of the space where the company is working.

However, an estimate of cost would be:

  • Initial approval from the Department of Economic Development: AED 235
  • MOA certification: AED 1200
  • Business license: AED 10000
  • Brand Name Approval: AED 735
  • Rental of physical facilities: May vary, depending on the location
  • Registration to the Ministry of Economy: AED 3000
  • Market rates, the UAE government owns 5% of the office rent and 20% of the warehouse

4. Who are the Local Service Agents in Dubai?

Firstly, the local service agents in Dubai are citizens who act as representatives of those investors planning on opening a company in Dubai.

Secondly, local service agents have no civil responsibilities or monetary ambitions and have no interest in the legal activities, operations, or profits of the company.

5. Benefits of opening a Mainland Company in the UAE

Deciding to invest in the United Arab Emirates has opened the doors of economic growth for many people, and has brought with it multiple benefits.

For example, with the flexibility of location and zero restrictions, Mainland Companies can do business with other companies, inside and outside the UAE, or negotiate directly with the consumer, without any limits.

Also, Mainland Companies in the United Arab Emirates enjoy great manageability in terms of productive activities. If at any time, the investor would like to diversify his company, he only has to register the new activity in the corresponding development department and he can start negotiating.

Another considerable advantage is the opportunity for large deals with the UAE government.

As a matter of fact, the government of the UAE regularly decides to invest in the economic growth of its people. For this reason, as the owner of a major Mainland Company, you can heavily benefit from this type of investment.

6. Differences between a Business Setup in Dubai and a Company in the Free Zones

Over the years, many investors have decided to start their business activities in Mainland Dubai and the Free Zones. Here are some differences between them:

Firstly, Mainland companies can conduct business in the local market, inside and outside the UAE and in any Free Zone with total freedom, and apply for all licenses (commercial or professional) Mainland companies have no visa limit. The Visa eligibility depends on the office space, the larger the office and the more people who work there, the more visas you can get.

In the same way, this type of company needs the approval of different government authorities and the presence of a local service agent in Dubai is mandatory.

On the contrary, companies in the Free Zones can only conduct business in the same Free Zone and inside and outside the UAE. For businesses in the local market, there are several restrictions to take into account.

Products must be imported or exported through a distributor or a person with a Mainland business license. Another key point is that commercial licenses are also included in the restrictions.

Businesses in Free Zones offer 2 visas per office. However, in some Free Zones, they grant from 3 to 6 visas. If an investor wants to increase the number of Visas, they will need to rent more offices or warehouses.

Businesses in the Free Zones do not need a Local Service Agent and do not need the approval of any government entity, since the main objective is duty-free import and export.

7. How can we help you learn more about the Mainland Company Formation process?

Connect Zone, can guide you in every step of the way to start your Mainland Company Formation in Dubai or the United Arab Emirates.

Our team of experts will take care of all the paperwork and legality of the process. We will assume the role of your Public Relations` Officer, to ensure transparency in operations and to maintain your trust and we will help you find the best business centers that adapt to the needs of your company.

In this way, Connect Zone seeks to be your main support and your trusted advisor, your only concern is to focus on starting this new company and this new stage of your life, and achieving all the opportunities that a company in the UAE can offer you.

Would you like to connect with us to learn more about the Mainland Company Formation in Dubai and the UAE? If you have any questions, you can call us at +97143316688. You can also write to our email where you can talk to one of our representatives, who will answer all your questions.

Lastly, if you want to receive more information, you can attach your CV to You do not need to worry, your information will not be shared or stored in our database.

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