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Open a Company in Dubai International Financial Centre

Open a Company in Dubai International Financial Centre

The Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) Free Zone is different from all other Dubai free zones because it offers some of the most advantageous company formation packages. One of these differences refers to the possibility of setting up special purpose vehicles, a unique option in the Emirate of Dubai. Apart from this, Dubai International Financial Centre is one of the most important financial hubs in the entire UAE.

Our company incorporation agents in Dubai can offer information about the laws applicable in this special zone and about DIFC company formation.

Types of companies in Dubai International Financial Centre

The DIFC has its own Commercial Code which provides for the following types of structures:

  • companies limited by shares;
  • limited liability companies;
  • branch offices of foreign companies, referred to as recognized companies;
  • partnerships.

As the Dubai free zone is a renowned financial center, the DIFC Authority also allows the establishment of investment companies and even protected cell companies, which fall under different regulations. Our Dubai company formation consultants can offer assistance related to setting up investment companies in Dubai International Financial Centre.

Requirements to open a company in DIFC

As the DIFC is a free zone of Dubai, the 51% local partnership requirement does not apply here, which is what makes this free zone so attractive. The Dubai International Financial Centre Authority does not impose a minimum share capital for companies operating in the non-financial sectors. A DIFC company must have at least one shareholder and a minimum number of two directors. The company must also have a commercial license in order to be able to operate in Dubai International Financial Centre.

Registering a company in Dubai International Financial Centre

The following documents must be filed with the free zone authority in order to open a company in Dubai International Financial Centre:

  • the prescribed application form;
  • a viable business plan;
  • the audited accounts of the shareholder for the last 3 years;
  • details of the shareholders and directors.

For setting up a company that will operate in the financial industry, additional requirements apply.

What kind of activities can you develop in DIFC?

Foreign investors interested in DIFC company formation can set up various activities in areas such as banking, finance, asset, and wealth management. These are regulated activities in DIFC, but entrepreneurs can also focus on non-regulated activities in the field of retail, consulting, human resources, beauty & personal care, auctions, art, and gastronomy (opening restaurants).

Also in DIFC, entrepreneurs can opt for the opening of a car rental business, design advertisement, communication engineering services, computer equipment trading, food&beverages, trading, as examples. Regardless of the options you have, do not hesitate to discuss with our agents about DIFC company formation cost plus formalities.

Business rules in DIFC

DIFC company setup involves compliance with certain business rules. As DIFC has an independent regulatory environment, it is good to know that companies in this free zone must have a registered office and at least two directors who can be of any nationality. Regarding the documents of the companies registered in DIFC, they must keep an accounting record for at least 10 years and must take into account annual audits. All these aspects related to DIFC company formation and the rules that you must follow in a foreign entrepreneur can be explained by our experienced local agents.

Additional steps after registering a company in DIFC

If you already know what DIFC company formation cost is and the formalities involved, it is good to know that after registration there are a few steps to consider. For example, you need to register for VAT purposes and to appoint an experienced auditor to assist you with that registration, VAT reporting, audits, and annual financial statements. We mention that you can also talk to our specialists with experience in taxes and accounting in Dubai, in order to benefit from complete services.

DIFC and IT companies

DIFC company setup is quite easy if the business conditions imposed by the local authorities are respected. In addition to the activities mentioned above, foreign entrepreneurs who want to set up a company in DIFC can opt for the IT field and the multiple possibilities. Anyone who wants to develop an IT business is welcome here, and among the business ideas that are gaining appreciation lately are blockchains, robotics, apps for online payments.


The business climate dedicated to the IT sector is an excellent one in terms of infrastructure, labor force, tax regime, and incentives offered. If you also want to open a business in the IT field, which you can register in DIFC, you can contact our local agents. We are here to help you with all the formalities, so you can send us an email and even use the free case evaluation on the site.

Why invest in Dubai

Dubai has for many years been an area of maximum interest for foreign investors who want to discover the possibilities of developing and generating consistent profits. Here are some of the reasons you should be on the list if you want Dubai to be your next business destination:

  • Advantageous taxation system – Although VAT was recently introduced, the UAE continues to have the best taxation system in the world. There is no corporate and personal income tax.
  • Stability – Developing a business in a stable environment is the dream of every entrepreneur. In Dubai, you can benefit from this, to which is added the fact that the UAE is one of the safest countries in the world.
  • Innovation hub – Dubai is the place where you can develop your innovative business, with full support from the authorities and permissive legislation.
  • Free trade zones – DIFC is one of the most popular business destinations in Dubai, which offers a stable and growing business climate. DIFC can be an excellent business option for foreign investors.

Here are some interesting statistics about the UAE economy:

  • The UAE recorded about $ 151 billion in total FDI in 2020.
  • 2020 Doing Business report ranked the UAE 16th out of 190 global economies in terms of optimal business conditions and climate.
  • Accommodation and food services absorb most foreign investment in the UAE, around 40% in 2019 alone.
  • The UAE is known for its massive oil & gas exports around the world.
  • 100% foreign ownership is accepted in over 122 business sectors, according to the 2020 regulations in the UAE.

Information about DIFC company formation cost can be offered by our specialists, so please contact our company registration representatives in Dubai.