Steps to start a General Trading Business

by Zaara 16, Jul 2019

Steps to start a General Trading Business

Lately, UAE has become one of the major business locations for all foreign investors and start-up entrepreneurs from various parts of the world. Over the last 2 decades, there has been huge development and growth in the business and financial sector in the UAE as the government of the United Arab Emirates has taken a number of steps for the growth and development of the economy of the country.

There has been continuing growth in various other sectors such as Tourism, Trade and Logistics, Restaurant and Cafeteria and other such management consultancies as the government of the UAE is trying to diversify its economy. Presently the UAE government is trying to shift its dependence from the Oil and Hydrocarbon sector.

General Trading Business in UAE Mainland

In order to start a general trading business, one needs to follow certain steps for ensuring that the business has been planned and implemented properly and legally as the laws in UAE are really strict.

The steps to set up a General Trading Business in Dubai Mainland are mentioned below:

1. Type of Business

First decide the type of business activity which will be performed by the business. This will help decide the future path for the business and will also help the management to decide the strategies for the future. It will also help during the expansion of the business either in the number of products or into new markets.

2. Reserve a trade name

Next the management needs to decide on a name for the business. It is to be made sure that the name which is decided is not in use by any others. If the name is already in use then it cannot be used by any other business.

3. Find a Sponsor

One of the most important requirements is finding a sponsor who can help you in the establishment. The said sponsor will be getting a share of 51% in the company. With the latest changes in the laws of the UAE, an entrepreneur can have 100% ownership meaning that he will not have to find a local sponsor. This will be applicable to businesses such as Trading, Manufacturing, Contracting, and Packaging. For the rest of the business activities, a local sponsor will be required which will be getting 51% of share in the business.

5. Obtain Approvals

In order to function properly the management needs to acquire some approvals from the concerned authorities. Obtaining a license for your business is of utmost importance as it makes your business legal. The business activity performed will decide the type of license required by the business.

In many cases a business also requires some external approvals too. Without these the business will not be able to function properly.

6. Notarize and Submit Documents

The management needs to acquire and notarize all the necessary documents which will be required for starting a General trading Business in UAE. After notarizing the documents the management should submit those to the Department of Economic Development (DED)

7. Pay the required license fees

The management needs to make the required payments for the issuance of the license.

Steps to Start a General Trading Business in UAE Free Zone

The steps to set up a General Trading Business in Dubai Mainland are mentioned below:

1.     Check company name availability

The management should ensure that the name decided for the company is not already in use. If such is the case then the management will have to choose a different name.

2.     Get the virtual office service agreement or office space (if needed)

In order to work properly, the business will require office space. The management can choose which type of office space will be suitable for the business.

3.     Submit the needed documents and license fee

The necessary documents along with the license fees must be submitted to the relevant authority in the Free Zone. This will lead to the authority providing the business license.

In case of a free zone or offshore establishment license, the company is required to submit the original documents to the Commercial Registry at the trade license and commercial registration department. On completion of the said process, the DED will issue the Trading license. The said license is valid for 1 year. A general trade license cost in Dubai is around AED 30,000 TO AED 40,000 depending upon various factors.

We at Commitbiz provide professional support concerning setting up a business in Dubai. We deal with every formality and aspect, making sure to satisfy all your business needs. Do Contact Us. We will be glad to be of assistance.


Is setting up a business in mainland Dubai a good option?

Yes, Mainland allows a business to flourish and also helps the growth of the business.

What are the steps to start a general trading business in Dubai Mainland?

The steps to start a General Trading Business in Dubai Mainland are:

  • Deciding the type of business
  • Reserving a trading name
  • Finding Sponsor
  • Obtaining Approval
  • Submitting the documents
  • Paying fees

Which is the cheapest Free-Zone for starting a general trading business?

The cheapest free zone in UAE for a General Trading Business will depend upon various factors such as:

  • Type of business activity performed
  • Requirements of the business
  • Jurisdiction selected

Which sectors can be the most profitable for doing business?

Some profitable businesses under general trading business are:

  • Garment and Apparel Trading
  • Jewellery Trading
  • FMCG

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