DUBAI
MARITIME CITY

FREE ZONE

DUBAI
MARITIME CITY

FREE ZONE

Dubai Maritime City free zone is a leading contributor to the development of the maritime sector in the UAE. The process of business setup in Dubai Maritime City is regulated by the Dubai Maritime City Authority (DMCA), which was established in 2007. The free zone has been successful in bringing forth a radical change in the local maritime sector through several industry initiatives and regulations.

Over the years, the DMCA has created a safe investment environment for foreign investors and reaffirmed Dubai’s position as a first-class international maritime hub. By setting up a business in Dubai Maritime City, foreign investors get direct access to world-class regulations and guidelines, robust infrastructure, excellent logistics services and plenty of investment opportunities. Business set up consultants in Dubai can help the investors navigate the company formation process. Read ahead to know further about Dubai Maritime Free Zone:

Free Zone Structure of Dubai Maritime City 

Dubai Maritime City is an ever-expanding development initiative. As of now, the free zone is divided into various infrastructure zones such as the following:

  1. Maritime Centre for enabling companies to set up their headquarters in Dubai Maritime City free zone
  2. Harbour Offices for companies to set up their operations
  3. Harbour Residence that can be used for residential purposes
  4. Industrial Precinct where vessels undergo repairs
  5. Marina District where recreational activities can be carried out
  6. Academic Quarter for training, research and educational purposes

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    Types of Entities in Dubai Maritime City 

    The process of business setup in Dubai Maritime City commences when the investors choose an appropriate legal structure for the proposed company. The legal structure is determined by the number of shareholders proposed for the entity. Investors who struggle with choosing a legal structure can seek the advice of business setup consultants in Dubai. The following are the legal entities in Dubai Maritime City

    1. Free Zone Establishment

    A Free Zone Establishment (FZE) in Dubai Maritime City is an independent legal entity. An FZE Dubai Maritime City can be formed with one shareholder. Availing business setup services in Dubai can make company formation easier.

    2. Free Zone Company

    At least two shareholders are required for a Free Zone Company (FZCO) formation in Dubai Maritime City. However, the number of shareholders should not exceed five. Business set up consultants in Dubai can expedite the FZCO formation.

    3. Branch Company

    A branch office doesn’t have a separate legal identity from its parent entity. A branch office should carry out some or all activities of its parent company. Companies established abroad and within the UAE can establish a branch office in Dubai Maritime City.

    Types of Licenses in Dubai Maritime City 

    As per the rules of company formation in Dubai, obtaining a trade license is mandatory to conduct any business activity in the emirate. Dubai Maritime City free zone issues trade licenses that authorise various maritime activities. Business set up consultants in Dubai can help foreign investors to select the right trade license. The following are the business licenses in Dubai Maritime City:

    1. Marine Crafts License

    Obtaining a Marine Crafts License in Dubai Maritime City is required to build and use vessels as per International maritime standards.

    2. Maritime Commercial License

    Maritime Commercial License in Dubai Maritime City is being issued to companies carrying out maritime activities as well as individuals conducting recreational activities in Dubai waters.

    3. Maritime Operation Services License

    Maritime Operation Services Licenses authorises activities such as waste management in seawater.

    4. Maritime Education and Research License

    Entities that provide maritime education and research activities must obtain Maritime Education and Research License in Dubai Maritime City. Foreign investors with access to bespoke business setup services in Dubai can quickly obtain this license.

    5. Commercial License

    A commercial license permits general maritime activities in Dubai Maritime City. Consult with business setup consultants in Dubai to know more about the license.

    Process of Business Setup in Dubai Maritime City 

    Dubai Maritime City offers a straightforward and flexible process of company formation. The process of business setup in Dubai Maritime City can be completed in a few steps with minimal documentation and regulatory approvals. However, the assistance of business setup consultants in Dubai will ease the process further. Stated below are the steps involved with the process of company incorporation in Dubai Maritime City:

    1. Apply for initial approval
    2. Present proof for company registration
    3. Submit a copy of the manager’s passport and CV
    4. Personal profile of owner/shareholder
    5. Submit relevant documents and fee
    6. Receive trade license in Dubai Maritime City

    Benefits of Business Setup in Dubai Maritime City 

    Investors select a free zone for company formation in Dubai after carefully considering all the potential benefits. It is important to analyse the benefits before opening a company in Dubai Maritime City as it will impact the business operations in the future. Business set up consultants in Dubai can help the investors to understand the advantages. Listed below are the major benefits of business setup in Dubai Maritime City:

    • 100% foreign ownership
    • 100% repatriation of capital and profits
    • No restriction on currency
    • Excellent infrastructure
    • No corporate tax and personal income tax
    • Strategic location
    • Efficient Logistic services
    • Safe investment environment
    • Presence of a multicultural workforce
    • Excellent unrestricted access to the open seas
    • Business-friendly economic policies

    An Overview of Maritime Sector in Dubai 

    Dubai is considered a lucrative centre for carrying out maritime activities. Industry experts have predicted that Dubai will advance soon to become the sixth most important maritime centre in the world. Dubai’s maritime sector annually generates nearly AED 26.9 billion for the emirate’s economy, equal to 7% of the total GDP. Dubai holds an unchallenged reputation as one of the fast-growing global maritime centres. Stated below is the factsheet of Dubai’s Maritime sector:

    • More than 7,400 companies work in the maritime sector & engage in 13,000 activities
    • The sector supports Dubai’s economy with more than 76,000 jobs
    • The sector accounts for 7 percent of Dubai’s GDP
    • Shipowners, ports, maritime engineering operations & maritime support services are among the most effective components of the maritime cluster

    Compliance Requirements in Dubai Maritime Sector 

    Foreign investors must consider certain regulatory obligations while setting up a business in Dubai Maritime City. The mandatory regulations are Ultimate Beneficial Ownership (UBO), Economic Substance Regulations (ESR) and Anti-Money Laundering and Combatting Financing of Terrorism (AML-CFT). Even companies undergoing liquidation in Dubai Maritime City free zone are required to meet such regulations. Failing to meet such regulations will lead to hefty penalties and other severe consequences such as suspension of trade license and exchange of information with foreign competent authorities. Business setup consultants in Dubai can help investors to meet such regulations and avoid penalties.

    Choose the Best Business Setup Services in Dubai, UAE 

    The process of business setup in Dubai Maritime City is bound by a set of rules and regulations. Foreign investors may falter while navigating the steps of company formation in Dubai. However, choosing the right business setup services in Dubai can make a big difference. Business setup consultants in Dubai such as Jitendra Business Consultants (JBC) can help foreign investors to tackle every complex company incorporation procedure.

    JBC is one of the leading providers of company setup services in Dubai with over 20 years of experience. We have a team of consultants who can simplify the process of company registration in Dubai. Our consultants will assist entrepreneurs in the selection of activities, identifying permissible activities & legal structures, applying for residence visas, opening a bank account etc. Our bespoke services also include compliance services such as ESR, UBO, AML-CFT etc.