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When planning to open a business in Abu Dhabi, investors must first identify the type of activity their firm is going to engage in.
Then they must determine the nature of the business, whether it is a limited liability company, a branch of a foreign firm or an establishment. After this, they must register the trade name.
After obtaining approvals from the different authorities, investors can proceed to the revelant authority to pay the fees and submit all the required documents needed to get a business licence.
Documents may include application form, trade name certificate, certificate of initial approval, copies of valid passports, Emirates ID and lease contract, among others. In case of branch offices, one needs to submit a copy of the mother establishment’s licence.
There are different types of licences being issued: commercial, professional, industrial, agricultural, occupational and tourism. Issuing authorities include the Department of Economic Development, Masdar City, Media Zone Authority, ZonesCorp and the Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority.
Opening a business in a free zone, which has its own set of setup rules, gives one 100% ownership of the enterprise. For businesses established in non-free zone areas, the rule is that 51% of the company must be owned by an Emirati partner.
• Abu Dhabi issues six types of business licences
• Issuing entities include DED, ZonesCorp and TCA
• Free zones have their own set of setup regulations
Source: Urmila Santosh, Special to Classifieds
The writer is a freelancer