Dubai e-commerce license [2020 Guide]
E-commerce is one of the world’s fastest growing industries. This should come as a surprise to no one. The way we shop has changed drastically over the last decade or so. Visiting the high street is no longer a necessity. Everything – from groceries to furniture – can be purchased online in just a few clicks.
The e-commerce industry in the UAE has grown in line with this global trend. Almost a third of UAE residents say they shop online every month. That figure increases to 36% for those aged between 18 and 24. [A2] The Middle East e-commerce market currently totals around USD 27bn and is expected to grow by approximately 16% over the next three years – up to USD 48.6bn in 2022. This growth is largely driven by the UAE along with Saudi Arabia.
How to get your e-commerce license in Dubai in 2020
For those looking to get a e-commerce license in Dubai (sometimes referred to as an online business license) , the process is both affordable and simple.
The first step is to apply to the Department of Economic Development (DED). This is an entirely online process and takes a little over an hour to complete. Once registered you can apply directly for your e-commerce license. In many cases, you can apply for and receive your license without ever visiting the UAE.
Alternatively, you can apply for your license in one of the UAE’s many free zones. Apply to Fujairah Creative City Free Zone with Business Zone and you’ll receive all of your important documentation, including your license, within three days:
Day 1 – Submit your application along with articles of incorporation (if necessary).
Day 2 – Receive copy of your trade license by email.
Day 3 – Your hard copy trade license, including Articles of Incorporation and Certificate of Incorporation, will be ready to collect from our offices.
If you require a free zone visa along with your license, we can also handle this process for you. We can usually return your passport to you, complete with valid visa, within three weeks from the start of your application.
Looking for the cheapest e-commerce license in Dubai, UAE?
Just like online shoppers, price is a factor for many entrepreneurs looking to set up in the UAE. If you’re looking for the cheapest e-commerce license in the UAE then applying directly to a free zone is a good option.
Several free zones, such as Fujairah Creative City, offer e-commerce licenses starting in the region of AED 15,000, including fees. [A5] This is an incredibly affordable option as there are few, if any, additional costs on top of this. Upfront share capital is not required and there’s no need to take on physical premises. All you need is a laptop, an internet connection and some knowledge about your chosen market and you are good to go.
Aside from price, there are many other great reasons to set up in a UAE free zone. As well as 0% corporate and a personal tax, free zone businesses benefit from 100% exemption from customs tax.
Unlike in many other countries, UAE free zone business owners also have full freedom to repatriate all invested capital and profits. There are also no foreign exchange controls and currency restrictions.
If you are looking to get your company license in Dubai, Dubai free zone visa, or the cheapest trade license in the UAE. Then our team can help.
Start small but think big
Applying for an online business license in Dubai allows you to start small and think big. It’s possible to start your business with no employees and no premises – even from outside the UAE. In many cases. the entire company formation process can be completed from the comfort of your own home, wherever that may be, via a simple and quick application process.
Then, as you start to grow you are free to take on office space or make use of co-working spaces and hot desk facilities.
It’s also very easy to take on employees as you expand. Most free zones will allow you to apply for multiple visas along with your e-commerce license. In Fujairah Creative City Free Zone, for example, you are free to apply for up to six residency visas, affording you the flexibility to staff your new company adequately from the outset, or increase your workforce over time. Unlike some other free zone options, this full allocation of 15 visas is available without having to rent large and costly office space.
If and when you do decide to expand your presence in the UAE, you are free to bring your family with you too. Whether you wish to apply for a visa for your spouse, children, parents or domestic staff, the process is simple. To ensure there are no unnecessary delays in the visa process, it’s a good idea to employ the services of a company formation expert who can manage your application for you.
You may, on the other hand, wish to start big. That’s no problem either. Most free zones offer office and warehousing facilities to suit companies of all sizes. It’s also easy to set up under an e-commerce or e-trade license in Dubai with multiple shareholders.
Ready to embrace e-commerce?
The simplest ideas are often the best and this is certainly the case when it comes to launching your e-commerce business in Dubai. It’s so simple – apply for your license, build your online shop (or pay someone else to do it for you) and start trading.
That’s what makes the UAE’s e-commerce industry such an attractive proposition. There are no major hoops to jump through for those looking to get involved. The skills and tools required are minimal. It bears repeating: if you have a product to sell, a computer, and access to the internet, you are ready to start trading.
Of course, your level of success depends on much more than this. Online selling is a competitive industry so it’s vital that you make sure your offering stands out from the rest. Before you get started ask yourself why someone would buy from you rather than a competitor – this could be price, expertise or your chosen niche.
We are BIZ, the official Dubai representative office of Fujairah Creative City Free Zone. If you are looking to open your company in Dubai, get a free zone license, or start a small business in Dubai, then we can help. From visa applications (including UAE investor visas) to all the necessary admin tasks, we handle it all – leaving you free to get on with your business.