Established in 1985, Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA) is the flagship operation of Dubai based and state-owned ‘Economic Zones World’ (one of the world’s biggest developers of economic zones, logistics, and R&D-driven industrial parks) and offers light industrial units, land, offices, and warehouses on a long-term lease. Spread over 48 sq. km, JAFZA is one of the world’s most service-driven, customer-centric free zones. Free from red tape and restrictions, JAFZA provides its customers an environment which is most conducive to growth.
Its strategic geographical location is also one of the advantages of this free zone. JAFZA is located next to Jebel Ali Port, which is the world’s largest man-made port in the Middle East and the 6th largest container port, served by 150 shipping lines offering 90 weekly services. Also, Jebel Ali Free Zone is a 30-minute drive away from the Dubai International Airport, connecting it to over 200 global destinations. Further, it well-connected through extensive road network and is just 35 km southwest of Dubai city, thus allowing it the fastest possible access to a market of over 2 billion people in the South and West Asia, the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) and Africa, making Jebel Ali Free Zone an excellent choice for all types of businesses.
JAFZA has manifested itself as a globally renowned commercial and industrial hub, attracting crème de la crème investors from the Middle East region, Europe, the Indian Sub-continent, America, Africa, and other nations owing to its unique value-added propositions.
Benefits of Setting Up a Business in JAFZA
- No restrictions on currency or minimum capital investment
- 100% foreign ownership: JAFZA allows its clients to operate as a wholly owned entity, without any need for local partnership. Moreover, the shareholder's liability is limited to the amount of its paid-up share capital
- 0% personal income tax
- 0% corporate tax for a period of 50 years, a concession that is renewable
- No currency restrictions and flexibility for companies to transfer any required capital
- 0% customs duties on import and/or re-export
- No restriction on hiring foreign employees
- A company established in JAFZA that has built its own facility has the convenience of mortgaging its own premises on the leased land to any bank or financing company for any of their debts or obligations
- Access to abundant energy makes this place cost-effective for clients to conduct production operations
- Presence of ready-made factories, warehouses, convention centers, on-site residential complexes, and pre-fitted offices
- Excellent infrastructure, support services, and communications
Types of Legal Entities Allowed in JAFZA
An individual or a corporate entity can set up a company in Jebel Ali Free Zone in any of the following ways:
- Free Zone Establishment (FZE) [entity with one shareholder]
- Free Zone Company (FZC/FZCO) [entity with 2 to 5 shareholders]
- Branch of a Foreign Company
- Branch of a Local Company
Types of Licenses Provided in JAFZA
It allows the license holder to import, distribute, and store all items as per the JAFZA rules and regulations
1. Trading License
It allows the license holder to import raw materials, export, distribute, and store items specified in the license to any country.
2. Service License
It allows the license holder to carry out the services (like legal advisory, accountancy, and business consultancy) specified in the license within the free zone. The type of service must conform to the parent company’s license, issued by the Economic Department or Municipality of the relevant Emirate in the UAE.
3. Industrial License
It allows the license holder to import raw materials, manufacture, process, assemble, package and export the finished products to any country.
4. National Industrial License
It provides the license holder the same status as a local inside the UAE and requires manufacturing companies to have a minimum of 51% shareholding or ownership of the Arabian Gulf Co-operation Council.
How to Set Up a Business in JAFZA?
Specific law regulations pertaining to licensing, registration, employment, and resolution of disputes apply to the companies planning for Jebel Ali free zone company registration. JAFZA company formation, just like any other free zone, requires you to follow a set of procedures and set up your business by getting an approval from the authority. Before you begin your journey with having a business set up, you have to be aware of all the regulations of Jebel Ali free zone Authority. The procedure for a company set up in JAFZA is as follows.
Procedure to Set Up a Business in JAFZA
- Fill in the application form
- After the application is approved, the authorities will issue an initial approval for the business
- Choose a ready-fitted office space from the JAFZA selection
- After the office is finalized, the lease documents are prepared
- After the office selection process is over, legal documents for business registration should be prepared
- Submit the same to the free zone authority
- The license will be issued within 2-4 weeks
- Start the process of opening a bank account
Documents Required to Set Up a Business in JAFZA
- Application form
- Passports copy of each individual (shareholders and managers)
- Bank reference for each individual
- Copy of the business plan
- Parent Company’s profile (in case of branch formation)
- Application for registration a free zone company (in case of establishing an FZCO)
- Application for registration a free zone establishment (in case of establishing an FZE)
- A one-time non-refundable application fee of AED 500
Why Set Up a Business in JAFZA?
Jebel Ali Free Zone offers a vibrant networking atmosphere, friendly business climate, and excellent logistics matrices. JAFZA holds the distinction of being the only free zone in the world that is situated between a seaport and an airport. Apart from being one of the world’s most efficient sea-air hubs, the other features that make JAFZA free zone an ideal location for company formation are:
- No paid upfront share capital requirement
- Land, warehousing, and office space available
- Access to a consumer market of over 2 billion
- Facilities like the convention center and on-site residential complexes
JAFZA has some of the biggest names to boast of in the business world. Exxon Mobil, General Electric, Proctor and Gamble, Nestle, Toshiba, Rolls Royce, etc. are some of the companies present in Jebel Ali Free Zone. Over 50 of the world’s top logistics companies are based in JAFZA offering huge outsourcing opportunities. These companies are a driving force for any entrepreneur to set up a business in this Dubai free zone. But to set up a business in Dubai, it is likely you’d need the help of a business consultant – because they are capable of giving you important information that you need in your business set up in Jebel Ali Free Zone Authority.
Commitbiz has been facilitating small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) as well as multinationals invest in JAFZA, an unparalleled business destination in the Middle East. Our value-added services help our clients avail the state-of-the-art amenities and world-class logistic infrastructure of the free zone, and create the right atmosphere for their business to thrive in this tax haven.
We help our clients’ company formation in Jebel Ali free zone, a free zone that symbolizes entrepreneurial dynamism, innovation, transparency in operations, and customer-centric procedures. Contact us to set up your business in Jebel Ali Free Zone, our team will be glad to assist you!