How much it costs to start selling in the UAE without us. 

Market Trade & Growth

Licensing costs

We are in business setup field since 8 years. Setting up a business from incorporation to launch can be a tedious and expensive process. Let’s highlight the main ones.

Trade license cost Starting from 13,000 AED

To sell towards Mainland of the UAE you need a Mainland LLC License. Just the business license will cost you at least AED 13,000, a recurring expense every year.

Immigration costs - Investor Visa of Owner 4,100 AED

Similar to buying a property here, getting a business license doesn’t require one to have a UAE residency visa. However, to operate a company you will need the ‘Emirates ID’ – the prime token of residency and legitimacy in the UAE – at every possible stage of living here. In fact, most of the applications and processes will start only after the Emirates ID is presented. The total cost of an Investor’s visa is a little more than AED 4,000. Both are now renewable every 2 years. 

Immigration and Labor cost of hiring Emoloyee 6,500 AED

Hiring employees can be a major responsibility. An Employment visa costs about AED 6,500. The law mandates that an employee’s compensation package include the following: Basic salary, 30-day annual paid leave, government medical insurance, gratuity pay, and return flight tickets to the home country. Salaries depend on the industry, job role, and most importantly the nationality of the expat.

Office cost starting from 7,500 AED

 A private office in a decent building with good furnishings and parking space around the Business Bay area starts from AED 140 per sqft in annual rent plus additional charges such as security deposits to the landlord and utility companies. But if you wish to work from home, a fictional office annual contract (Ejari) can be obtained for as little as AED 8,000. An Ejari is a mandatory part of the business license issuance process.

* Bank Account broker cost starting from 10,000 AED

This cost is not mandatory but might save time and trouble. Then comes the challenging bit of opening a company bank account. The banks receive hundreds of applications every day but very few are approved, and that too may take up to 2 months. There are a few reasons why the process is difficult. The banks don’t like freezone registered companies, or those with specific activities in the license that are red-flagged such as General Trading, Gold Trading, Management Consultancy, etc. Furthermore, certain nationalities are blacklisted such as those from Iran, Russia, and CIS countries. You will also be rejected if you have transactions and transfers with entities from these countries. Applying to add other non-AED currencies will not be accepted, especially if the applicant is a new resident in the UAE. If the applications are accepted, the banks will ask you for a high ‘Initial Deposit’ and to block a high ‘Minimum Balance’ that you need to maintain in the account at all times, on the pretext that you will get more facilities. In reality, the Initial Deposit and Minimum Balance are tied to the bankers’ own incentives and commissions. And then after your account is opened, you run the risk of transfers being blocked or accounts getting suspended at the discretion of the banks’ Compliance Departments. These departments are tough on their clients as they are themselves subjected to high penalties by the Central Bank if they fail to control financial crimes such as money laundering.

* Company setup professional fee starting from 10,000 AED

This cost is not mandatory, you can try to setup your company yourself. Downside is, this system is different than European, and you might find yourself wasting time in going in circles, or you might choose wrong license type 

Total Cost 31,000 AED - 56,000 AED

The lower cost is when you have decided to open your company and bank account yourself, and you have not planned to hire anyone to work for you, you shall do everything alone. In this variant, you need to Add the Costs of your stay in Dubai in a hotel for 2 weeks plus 2,3 more visits for bank account purposes. If you hire a company setup professional it would stay in Dubai for 5-8 working days. Some professionals opening companies, take care of bank account and there is no need for a broker.  

Setting up operations

After 2 weeks or 3 months you have a company and a bank account, and possibly you hired someone to handle your sales procesees. 

Salary for your employee Starting from 6,000 AED Monthly

Unless you want to do everything yourself, you will wish to hire someone to sell your products, build relations and operate your business. Salaries vary as in any other country, but legally hired person has a payment slip tied to a WPS – wage protection system – local system to secure employemnt.  


VAT Registration 2 weeks Starting from 2,500 AED

To start trading on any platform or with any local partner you need local TRN number to even register as a trader. This process takes about 2 weeks.  

Import Code Registration 1 week Starting from 130 AED

After acquiring Vat number you can now register your company to collect goods as an importer, and have a file in UAE Customs. 

Warehousing, Fulfillment, Storage

You will need to store your product before selling it. Costs vary.  Warehousing: AED 72,000 for 100 Sqm Fulfilment & Handling: AED 40/CBM

Accounting costs Starting from 3,000 AED Monthly

Unless you shall do Accounting for yourself, hiring bookkeeping services is a must. Costs depend on the amount of sales, but lets assume a minimum mentioned above. 

PO BO cost 1,500 AED Yearly

Cost of Emirates post office to handle post services 

Historical Growth

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2020-2021 Stock Growth

  • 2015-2016 12% 12%
  • 2016-2017 13% 13%
  • 2017-2018 14% 14%
  • 2018-2019 16% 16%
  • 2019-2020 11% 11%
  • 2020-2021 8% 8%

We are invested in your success and future

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