Types of Business Licenses Available in Abu Dhabi Mainland

by Zaara 08, Apr 2020

Types of Business Licenses Available in Abu Dhabi Mainland

The United Arab Emirates is considered to be one of the top-ranked business hubs in the globe. With a booming economy, the IMF states that the economy in the UAE will outperform the economy of the UK, US, Germany, Singapore and many other countries in the upcoming years.

Before officially starting any business in the UAE, one has to acquire an appropriate business license according to the business activity. Without a valid license, one cannot begin to their operations in the UAE. Today we are going to discuss the type of business licenses, requirements to obtain it, and conditions before getting it in one of the Emirates in the UAE – Abu Dhabi.

Business Licenses in Abu Dhabi

A trade license is a certificate that permits an individual or a corporate entity to practice a particular type of activity in line with the legal conditions and requirements relating to that specific activity. The Law No. (2) of 2009 concerning the issuance of licenses in the Emirates of Abu Dhabi, legalizes all types of business activities in Abu Dhabi by issuing required licenses. The law stipulates that neither an ordinary person nor a legal entity is permitted to engage in any economic activity or branch of activity without obtaining a relevant license from the concerned authority and to fulfil the legal requirements applicable to the practice of that particular activity.

Different Trade Licenses in Abu Dhabi

The Department of Economic Development (DED) has listed thousands of activities but streamlined major businesses under a few trade license in Abu Dhabi. There are six main licenses issued by the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (DED). One can apply for a business license via the DED website or in person at a DED service centre.

The licenses are –

1.Commercial License

This type of permit is issued to the owners of the companies or establishments engaged in commercial activities such as general trading, real estate, construction, transportation, hospital, clinic etc.

2.Agricultural License

Agricultural license is obtained by the owners of arable and livestock farms, and fisheries

3.Craftsmanship License

Craftsmanship license is issued to individuals whose work depends on their mental skills, intellectual abilities, academic achievement and scientific talents like consultants, auditors, and lawyers.

4.Industrial License

Industrial licenses are issued to owners of factories, of whatever type, which manufactures products to sell them for profit.

5.Tourism License

A tourism license is issued to owners of facilities that specialize in tourist activities like restaurants, hotels, tourist camps, travel agencies, floating restaurants etc.

6.Professional License

This business license is issued to artisans and craftsmen who practice and earn from an independent livelihood or craft using their physical efforts or aided by some tools and equipment, e.g. carpentry, steelworks and typing, etc. 

Requirements and Conditions to Obtain License in Abu Dhabi

The legal requirements and conditions for obtaining a business license Abu Dhabi vary depending on the form of the business activity. Licensing stages can be summed as follows:

  • Trade name reservation
  • General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs- Abu Dhabi’s approval of an investor’s visa
  • Specifying the type of activity and obtaining the consent of the concerned entity accordingly Inspecting the premises of the business
  • Issuing a preliminary approval
  • Issuing a final approval
  • Paying the fees
  • Requesting and getting the Membership of the Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce & Industry
  • Opening a card for the business shall be opened at both the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratization and the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs- Abu Dhabi

Application in Business Centre

The Department of Economic Development in Abu Dhabi launched the smartphone application "Abu Dhabi Business Centre", which enables users to handle all trade license-related transactions through it. The application offers various services related to issuing and cancelling a business license. The application can be downloaded from Google Play and App Stores.

Commitbiz – Your One-Stop Shop for Business Setup Services

We at Commitbiz Management Consultants can help acquire a business license for your company in Abu Dhabi. We are proficient in providing business setup services in the UAE. Contact us­­­ today to get more information.