Key Requirements to Register an Offshore Company in JAFZA

Key Requirements to Register an Offshore Company in JAFZA

Entrepreneurs looking to carry out international business activities or own properties in Dubai can consider offshore company formation in Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA). JAFZA offshore company formation is ideal for foreign investors as it is cost-effective, tax-efficient and provides access to the global market without much administrative work. If you want to open a JAFZA offshore company, talk with the registered agents in Dubai who can make the process hassle-free.

Offshore company formation in the UAE comes with multiple benefits for foreign investors. However, you need to understand the process and requirements to enjoy the benefits seamlessly. In this article, we will discuss the procedure, requirements and benefits of JAFZA offshore company registration. Read ahead if you are planning to set up a JAFZA offshore company:

JAFZA Offshore Company Registration: How to do it?

The process of JAZFA offshore company formation is easier than you imagined. Unlike the free zone or mainland company formation, the UAE offshore company incorporation involves minimal administrative burden. All you need to do is religiously follow the below steps:

Select Registered Agents in Dubai

You need to hire a registered agent to set up an offshore company in JAFZA. Registered agents in Dubai can be a business setup consultancy firm, who will be responsible for carrying out all the administrative requirements of dealing with JAFZA authority.

Choose three names

Your JAFZA offshore company needs to have a name. However, registered agents in Dubai advise you to submit at least three company names to JAFZA, from which one will be approved. Submitting multiple names will help you to avoid potential delays in name approval. For example, a delay can happen if your proposed name is already taken by another company.

  1. Select an activity

You need to select an activity for your JAFZA offshore company. Registered agents in Dubai can advise you on the activities permitted by JAFZA.

Register for an AOA and an MOA

You need to submit an Article of Association (AOA) and a Memorandum of Association (MOA) to the free zone authority. These documents must contain company data such as the shareholders and management team, and the rules and regulations.

Submit all documents to get a certificate of incorporation

You need to submit all the documents and JAFZA will issue a certificate of incorporation. Note that, offshore companies in the UAE will be provided with a certificate of incorporation instead of a trade license. You need to submit the following documents:

  • Profile (CV) of the shareholders
  • Bank reference for shareholders
  • Passport copy of shareholders
  • Proof of residence
  • Visa copy of UAE entry stamp page copy

Open a corporate bank account

Investors who registered a JAFZA offshore company are allowed to open a corporate bank account. However, the smoothness of the process depends on your KYC compliance related to Anti-Money Laundering and Combatting Financing of Terrorism (AML-CFT).

Requirements for Offshore Company Registration in JAFZA

You have learned about how to set up an offshore company in JAFZA. However, you need to learn about certain mandatory requirements as well. Registered agents in Dubai can help you to meet these requirements. They are given below:


At least one shareholder is mandatory to register an offshore company in JAFZA. You can include corporate shareholders as well.


At least one director is required for JAFZA offshore company registration. However, you can’t appoint corporate bodies as directors.


Offshore companies incorporated in JAFZA must have a secretary.

Account Keeping and Audit Requirements

Offshore companies registered with JAFZA are required to keep the accounting records for ten years from the date on which they are made. An auditor approved by JAFZA must be hired to examine and report if the accounts are prepared per relevant laws and standards.

Local Office Requirements

All the offshore companies incorporated in JAFZA need to maintain a registered office in the JAFZA free zone. However, investors can use the office of registered agents in Dubai as the company’s registered office.

Ultimate Beneficial Ownership

JAFZA-registered offshore companies are required to disclose their Ultimate Beneficial Owner (UBO). They must also maintain a Real Beneficiary Register (RBR) and a Partners of Shareholders Register (PSR). Violation of UBO regulations is liable to hefty penalties and other consequences.

Economic Substance Regulations

JAFZA-incorporated offshore companies fall within the scope of Economic Substance Regulations (ESR). If the companies have conducted any of the nine relevant activities, they must meet ESR requirements such as ESR notification, ESR Report filing and meeting the Economic Substance Test. The nine relevant activities are Banking, Insurance, and Holding Companies. Headquarters business, Investment Fund Management, Lease-Finance business, Shipping, Intellectual Property business, Distribution & Service Centre business.

Benefits of Starting an Offshore Company in JAFZA

Setting up an offshore company in JAFZA offers many benefits to foreign investors. Some of them are given below:

  • Offshore companies are tax-exempted
  • 100% foreign ownership
  • Ability to own real estate properties in Dubai
  • Authorised to operate internationally (but not inside the UAE)
  • Liabilities of the company limited to its paid-up capital
  • Ideal for asset protection, IP registration, international consultation services & holding company formation

Hire Registered Agents in Dubai for JAFZA Offshore Company Formation

The benefits outlined here are valid reasons for the popularity of JAFZA offshore company formation among foreign investors. However, foreign investors are required to appoint registered agents in Dubai such as Jitendra Business Consultants (JBC), to set up the company. JBC offers the best offshore company formation services in Dubai, making the process lighting quick and smooth. We enjoy a good reputation with all the free zone authorities in the UAE, including JAFZA. JBC can provide the investors with a premium office address at JBC’s premises in JAFZA. We can also undertake all the administrative tasks for the companies. Apart from that JBC can help the companies avoid ESR, and UBO penalties by properly meeting their obligations.

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