Benefits of Doing Business in Dubai Webinar Series 2: TAKE THE FEAR OUT… ASK YOUR QUESTIONS!

NOW is the right time to invest and open a business in Dubai!

Dubai Chamber along with their international offices in Africa in collaboration with Bizzmosis along with its CEO/Founder – Marianna Bulbuc answered SECTOR SPECIFIC questions and sorted out the misconceptions about setting up and doing business in Dubai in a recent webinar held on June 16.

The initiative aimed to provide all those interested in investing or extending their business in Dubai with the basic information they need when making their decision to invest in Dubai – covering all aspects of the investment as general information on the investment environment | detailed information on sectors & economic fields | various logistical, financial & organizational arrangements for starting a business.

Webinar speakers:
⏩ Mr. Omar Alkhan – Director of International Offices @Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry
⏩ Ms. Marianna Bulbuc – CEO/Founder of @Bizzmosis
⏩ Mr. Zemedeneh Negatu – Global Chairman @Fairfax Africa Fund, LLC
⏩ Mr. Norvan Acquah – Hayford – Moderator, Public Relations Manager @Ghana Link Network Services

The webinar was attended by more than 100 business leaders from 32 countries across the GCC, Africa and Eurasia.

Polling Question nr.1
What is the top reason for your interest in doing business in Dubai?
Participants answers during the webinar:
51% – ease of doing business
39% – safety and security
32% – strategic location
27% – new added benefits and incentives due to COVID-19

Which zone is best for you when setting up a business in Dubai?

  • FREE ZONES – Dubai
  • Areas with special tax, customs and imports regime, aiming at worldwide trading and limited to B2B model into the UAE.
  • 100% foreign ownership and offers of free licensing, commercial and industrial premises rent benefits

  • MAIN LAND DED – Dubai
  • Governed by central authorities, direct access to the COVID-19 stimulus package that includes 15 initiatives focused on the commercial sector, retail, external trade, tourism and the energy sector.
  • Unlimited trade within UAE and internationally (B2C & B2B).
    100% ownership on government targeted industries such as modern farming, envirotech, meditech.

What is the difference for trade between Free Zone & Main Land?

  • Free Zone registered companies can trade worldwide without restrictions. No local special permits are required
  • Free Zone companies are permitted to trade directly into the UAE wholesale, to locally registered traders and distributors
  • Free Zone companies can not trade in retail directly to the final consumer of Dubai or UAE. It needs to obtain all necessary local authorities permits and product registration approvals and engage a main land DED registered retailer.
  • Main Land DED registered companies can trade worldwide and within UAE without restrictions
  • Main Land DED companies are permitted to trade directly into the UAE wholesale and retail to final consumers
  • Main Land DED companies need to obtain all necessary approvals from respective authorities on products and items registration as well as business premises permits, safety of products handling etc.

Frequent Questions:

“Trouble is opportunity”  Warren Buffet @New York Times

Can I trade in Dubai and UAE without having a license registered?

You can trade, but you have to have a local registered distributor to record and obtain the permit at the customs and other authorities to bring those goods into the country and retail or wholesale them. You wouldn’t be allowed to trade directly with the license from abroad to the final consumer in the UAE without having the permit.

Do I need a residency to own or register a company in Dubai or UAE?

No. UAE offers licensing in Free Zone and Main Land without the obligation of the shareholders or the partners to actually be a resident in the UAE. Majority of licenses offer the option of the general manager of the company or partners to obtain investor residency post license registration.

Can I register my products in Dubai without a license?

No. The government in the UAE prides itself worldwide for consumer protection laws and regulations. In order to protect the consumers and guarantee the quality of services and goods, in order to trade in the UAE you have to have a license and be liable for the product and service that you provide to your clients.

Is Dubai the best for eCommerce?

UAE holds the largest and fastest-growing eCommerce market in the Middle East, and nearly 81% of the Dubai’s adult population regularly purchases goods online.”

“Do the events causing others to panic provide opportunities for me?”

1. A crucial benefit to starting an online business in Dubai is the ability to do so quickly and cost-efficiently (free licensing available during COVID-19 support)
2. It takes an average of 5 days to register a business in Dubai and the UAE, compared to Middle East with an average of 20 days or more.

What farming opportunities Dubai’s desert is offering?

IMG: Becky Balderstone, founder of Ripe Organic

The agriculture sector in the UAE has undergone many changes. The challenge is to conduct agriculture with minimum water usage. Modern irrigation systems and hydroponics are being increasingly engaged. Farmers are switching to organic farming.

According to statistics, the UAE imports 80 % of its food, which is a major challenge for the country’s food security. To address the situation, steps are being taken to restructure the food supply chain.

Vertical farming, a practice of growing local fruits and vegetables with minimal resources, is currently making waves.

*New license offered to foreign investors: Modern Farming activity that includes over 13 different activities in one license and includes: fruits, vegetables, leafy greens and fish farming activities, etc. with 100% foreign ownership for production and trade worldwide.

Polling Question nr.2
Which type of license are you most interested in?
Participants answers during the webinar:
79% – Commercial Trading
21% – Professional Services

Polling Question nr.3
Which industry do you represent or you are interested to do business in Dubai?
Participants answers during the webinar:
36% – other industry
32% – Food and Beverage
4% – Logistics
4% – Health
4% – IT
6% – Tourism & Hospitality
6% – Finance
9% – Manufacturing


Suzanne: My business is an African handmade textile for home decorations. How do I do business in Dubai with items such as towels, table cloths etc.?

Marianna Bulbuc: The products such a linen, clothes, towels and materials used for decor or direct usage are non regulated items and can be easily cleared and registered through Dubai Customs. The 2 way of collaboration would be to register a company either in a Free Zone or Main Land in Dubai or UAE and start trading yourself to the direct consumer or you can get great support from Dubai Chamber offices in Africa and here in UAE to access the market through connections of local distributors. So, existing general trading licenses or specific textile industry related registered companies can become the distributor and logistics partners for you into bringing those products to the UAE.

Purity: How do I apply for food-processing license in Dubai? Is there a specific website?

Marianna Bulbuc: The license or the activities regulated by the areas where you will register yourself in to – it can be a food processing entity either in Free Zone or Main Land. Everything is linked to the location you will have to rent and the facilities where you will have to process the food – be it’s raw food, fruits and vegetables, meat or semi-processed food, etc. Both jurisdictions (Main Land and Free Zone) are available in this case.
There is no centralized platform that has all the licensing information in one place, the person interested to register a business must directly visit the relevant authority who is issuing licenses for businesses or can contact us for a specific advice to their business model.

Juliette, Nigeria: How do I establish myself as an event planner in Dubai using the freelance license? What is the best Free Zone to obtain a freelance license from?

Marianna Bulbuc: The freelance permits are available in multiple Free Zones. Dubai has an amazing go-freelance permit offered by TECOM jurisdiction. You can also obtain a freelance permit in Abu Dhabi with twofour54 Free Zone, in Um Al Quwain, in Ras Al Khaimah through RAKEZ, and many others.
Each freelance platform focuses on specific industries, for example Abu Dhabi is focused more on media industry, in Dubai you have project planning, coaching training and media industries, in Umm Al Quwain – freelancing is more about software and IT as well as media industry. So in the end, any freelance permit chosen and will be offered to the applicant only if the applicant can show experience, expertise and proofs of previous works in the type of industry they want to obtain a freelance permit.
Speaking specifically about event planning – the Free Zone jurisdiction will ask proof of previous experience, education in the field, works previously handled and only after, the freelance permit will be offered.
Important to understand is that the freelance permit is not a business license, it is a license that allows only the individual who holds that permit to operate under it, you cannot hire in the future employees under this permit. It will also offer the possibility of obtaining the residency for the freelance permit holder as well as for the family members (spouse and children).

Anonymous Attendee, Ghana: I’m a fashion designer and I would like to know what opportunities are available in the fashion industry in Dubai. What are the processes that one needs to go through to setup a fashion business in Dubai?

Marianna Bulbuc: Fashion industry in Dubai has brought a lot of interest in the last few years. We have had great fashion houses and fashion designers that started from here or have exposed themselves to the world from Dubai. Of course well renowned buildings such as Burj Khalifa or Burj Al Arab and other famous sights have supported free of charge numerous fashion shows to support traditional fashion as well as creative fashion. Fashion industry though, if we look at it from design perspective – it is a non regulated activity industry in the UAE and is quite cost-effective to register.

Licenses in Free Zone for fashion design and production start from 1000$ and up words. Licensing in Main Land Dubai for fashion industry recently has been reduced considerably and a foreign investor can have a 100% foreign ownership license in fashion design, tailoring, producing + free of interest installment plans for the license payment. Investors can obtain the license without the need of an office initially that can be applicable for example to a fashion designer that works on design remotely, than he/she can obtain the license, promote its design and then contract local manufacturers if needed.

Anonymous Attendee, Ethiopia: Are there any current incentives in Dubai for coffee importers, exporters, retailers due to COVID-19?

Omar Khan: “Dubai can be called a “tea drinking nation” that have been influenced by the Indian and China culture, but coffee has come to the roof. Instead of having just a buyer of tea or coffee, I recommend that you connect with the Dubai Coffee Center. The Dubai Coffee Center was setup to create a centralized relationship between the producer farmer exporter and the retailer or packer.”

In the closing note, Omar Khan added: “As many countries around the world face disruptions in supply chains and other challenges due to the impact of COVID-19, many companies are looking for reliable trading partners and markets like Dubai that can allow them to expand their global footprint”, adding that the results of Dubai Chamber poll reflects growing confidence in Dubai among foreign investors.

🎥 Watch the entire webinar and find out what other interesting questions have been answered during the live event.
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Bizzmosis is honored and thankful for the opportunity and collaboration and look forward to provide the needed support to all entrepreneurs looking to establish or expand their business into the UAE!

Do you need more guidance and support to establish your business in UAE?
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4 thoughts to “Ease of doing business – one of the main reasons why investors consider Dubai

  • Berhanu

    Our company, Maraki Baltina , is a food processing compan specializing in Ethiopian processed dry foods and Injera (Ethiopian flat bread). We want to start exporting and distributing our products to UAE Ethiopian community and restaurants. Hope the webinar will be a good start to learn how to open business in Dubai.

    Best regards,


    • Dumitra Ungureanu

      Dear Berhanu,
      Thank you for your interest in the coming webinar. We hope the webinar will trigger more entrepreneurs to expand their business within the UAE market due to the multiple benefits, incentives and support currently offered by the UAE government.

      Glad to hear about your expanding plans and happy to provide more detailed information specifically to your business needs.

      Feel free to ask questions during the webinar and we will answer live.

      Kind regards

  • Beih Israel

    How do I get market in Dubai for my farm produce? Thank you

    • Dumitra Ungureanu

      Dear Beih Israel,

      Thank you for your interest in our webinar. In order to trade in UAE with goods you need to register a trading license or find a local food items trading registered distributor and sign collaboration agreements.

      Happy to provide more details in regards to your business needs.

      Feel free to ask questions during the webinar and we will answer live.

      Kind regards


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