Types of Business Licenses in Dubai

Are you planning to establish a business in Dubai? This is a great idea as Dubai is a strategic location and has a thriving economy. The Emirate is attractive due to various business opportunities, innovation, and economic progress.

However, to set up a business there you must be aware of the legal regulations, necessary approvals, application process, requirements, etc. for obtaining a license.

In this article, we will look at the type of business licenses in Dubai. It will help entrepreneurs like you identify which type of license is needed for the business you want to set up in Dubai.

What is a Business License in Dubai?

A business license is an approval from the authorities that allows a business entity to engage in commercial activities. In other words, it grants a business entity or individual the right to undertake specific business activities within a specified jurisdiction. 

Reasons to Obtain a Business License in Dubai

Before looking into types of business license in Dubai, let us understand the importance of obtaining a business license–

a) A business license certifies your company as a legal business entity thereby allowing you to do business in the Emirate.

b) A business license allows official authorities to control, supervise and regulate commercial proceedings. 

c) It ensures consumer safety and well-being as the authorities have approved the business operations

d) UAE laws mandate you to have a business license. You may need to bear heavy fines and face legal action for not having that.

Different Types of Business Licenses in Dubai

Let us take a look at the types of licenses in Dubai. We have added the permitted activities under each business license for your reference–

1. Commercial License

Commercial license in Dubai is issued to individuals or companies involved in general trading businesses. It can be for any sort of trading activity related to goods, commodities, and services. Companies having this license can function both within and outside of the UAE.

Some of the activities permitted for having the commercial license are –

  • Logistics.
  • Retailing.
  • Car Rental.
  • Chemicals.
  • Construction.
  • Public transit.
  • Real Estate Brokerage.
  • Property development, etc.

2. Professional License

Depending on their skills and educational qualifications, a professional license in Dubai is issued to individuals and companies that wish to engage in professional services. This license is granted by the Development of Economic Department (DED). Obtaining this license adds credibility and expertise to the business.

Some of the activities permitted for having a professional license in Dubai are –

  • Consultancy.
  • Accountancy.
  • Tax Consultancy.
  • Environmental activities.
  • Management and Marketing.
  • Information technology (IT)and IT infrastructure, etc.

3. Industrial License

An industrial business license in Dubai is granted to businesses or individuals involved in manufacturing activities. The license allows the holder to arrange and process goods using raw materials. The company must have a physical office in the UAE.

Some of the activities permitted under an industrial business license in Dubai are as follows –

  • Carpet Manufacturing.
  • Garments Manufacturing.
  • Manufacturing of meat products.
  • Dairy Products Manufacturing.
  • Appliance and Machinery factory.
  • Animal and Bird feed manufacturing.
  • Wood products and furniture manufacturing, etc.

4. Tourism License

A tourism license is granted for businesses operating in the tourism and hospitality sector. The business must comply with the Dubai tourism guidelines and obtain approval from Dubai Tourism. This license offers easy access to the tourism industry in the Emirate.

Some of the activities permitted under tourism license in Dubai –

  • Hotel renting.
  • Tourist camps.
  • Crise Boat rental.
  • Guest houses.
  • Travel agencies.
  • Tour operators.
  • Event Management companies, etc.

5. Agricultural License

The agricultural license is issued to individuals or businesses that are involved in agriculture-related activities.

Some of the activities permitted for having an agricultural license are mentioned below –

  • Pest control.
  • Pesticides and Fertilizers.
  • Cultivating growing crops.
  • Installation of the greenhouse.
  • Trading of plants and crops.
  • Harvesting vegetables and grains.
  • Installation of Irrigation systems.
  • Providing agrarian consultancy and enhancers, etc.

6. Craftsmanship License

A craftsmanship license in Dubai is issued to those who provide services that require strength, abilities, skills, etc. Any person working independently or a company that employs a craftsman must have this license.

Some of the activities permitted under a craftsman license are as follows –

  • Plumbing.
  • Carpentry.
  • Electrical work.
  • Blacksmiths.
  • Electricians.

In addition to the above-mentioned licenses, Dubai authorities also offer a permit known as a freelance permit thereby allowing freelancers to reside and earn a living in the Emirate.

Let us have a look at this permit –

freelance permit in Dubai is issued to individuals who wish to work independently without the need for a physical office or business setup. It is granted to professionals in creative fields, such as entertainment, media, art, etc.

Some of the activities permitted under the freelance permit are as follows –

  • Actor(s)/actresses.
  • Animator(s).
  • Photographer(s).
  • Writer(s).
  • Media Specialist(s).
  • Artist(s).
  • Designer(s), etc.

Learning about the types of business license in Dubai is important if you wish to establish a business entity in a successful economic hub. Understanding about the business licenses in Dubai will help you follow local laws and ensure smooth business operations.

Connect with Commitbiz to ensure that you meet the licensing requirements and complete the process without much hassle. We are a team of experts who can provide quick and top-quality services, helping you start your business in Dubai at the earliest.


Are there specific licenses for e-commerce businesses in Dubai?

Yes, Dubai offers licenses tailored for e-commerce businesses, known as DED e-Trader licenses. These licenses allow individuals to conduct business activities online without the need for a physical office space.

Can I upgrade my business license in Dubai?

Yes, depending on your business requirements, you can upgrade your business license in Dubai. For instance, if you initially start with a professional license and later decide to engage in commercial activities, you can upgrade to a commercial license.

What are the implications of not having a valid business license in Dubai?

Operating a business without a valid license in Dubai can result in hefty fines, legal penalties, and even business closure. Additionally, it can damage your reputation and credibility, impacting your ability to conduct future business in the region.

Can I apply for multiple business licenses in Dubai?

Yes, it is possible to apply for multiple business licenses in Dubai. It allows you to engage in diverse business activities. However, each license requires separate registration and compliance with relevant regulations.

Can I transfer my existing business license to another person/entity in Dubai?

Yes, it is possible to transfer a business license in Dubai, subject to approval from the relevant authorities and compliance with transfer procedures. This process typically involves submitting relevant documents and obtaining a no-objection certificate.