Setting up a company in UAE

Incorporate your business in Dubai

All our clients are unique. All have bespoke personal requirements that we fulfil. However, one of the most popular company incorporation solutions we deliver is a Ras Al Khaimah company.

Therefore, we thought we’d talk you through why these companies are so useful for so many people.

Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) is one of the 7 emirates forming the United Arab Emirates (UAE). A company established in RAK is a UAE company, and attracts all the benefits of a UAE company.

RAK companies are set up via the Ras Al Khaimah Investment Authority (RAKIA), which is managed by the government of Ras Al Khaimah. Only licensed registered agents are authorised by the government to set up companies in Ras Al Khaimah; we at Winston Wolfe are your licensed registered agents.

We are licensed to offer a full service and consultancy business, meaning if we identify that a RAK company is appropriate for your personal requirements, we’re authorised to take you through the entire set-up process, right through to opening a bank account for your new RAK company.

The Ras Al Khaimah Investment Authority exists to enable people like you to acquire a legal presence in the UAE, and Winston Wolfe exists to enable people like you to establish your legal presence.

By allowing us to establish your legal presence in the UAE you can then benefit from the massive range of advantages that the UAE offers.

Why are UAE companies suitable for so many people?

The UAE is not blacklisted by the OECD. The UAE is not considered a tax haven. The UAE is 100% tax free…

…and the UAE offers company directors one of the highest levels of privacy protection in the world.

Therefore, the benefits of establishing a company in the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah start to become much more obvious.

Many of our clients have realised the personal benefits of a RAK company, and they can include the following: –

  • Choice of a free zone or non-free zone company setup
  • Low cost of business set-up and ongoing operation
  • Very easy process to establish a company
  • Ease of doing business
  • 100% corporate and personal tax exemption
  • 100% foreign ownership for free zone companies
  • 100% repatriation of capital and profits
  • RAK companies can have a bank account in the UAE
  • RAK companies can own real estate in the UAE, approved by the Ras Al Khaimah Investment Authority
  • No capital deposit required
  • No restrictions on foreign currencies
  • No local office required
  • No employees required, and therefore no associated costs
  • Invest via a RAK company in real estate or trademarks and rights
  • Use a RAK company as a holding company
  • No requirement to keep accounts
  • 0% corporate tax, 0% income tax, 0% VAT, 0% sales tax, 0% inheritance tax, 0% wealth tax!

This broad range of exceptional benefits means that a UAE company is very useful for many people – from international corporations seeking favourable tax structures for their holdings, to digital nomads looking for a place to establish a presence to negate their own personal tax liability – to name but 2 examples.

Why choose Ras Al Khaimah?

As there are 7 emirates making up the UAE, conceivably you could choose any of them for your company incorporation.  However, the benefits of establishing your company in RAK include these strategic advantages:

  • RAK is just a 45 minute drive from Dubai
  • RAK enables easy access to all markets in the MENA region
  • In real terms, 31% of world’s population is within a 4-hour flying radius
  • First class and direct access to express highways, seaports and airports
  • Companies established in RAKIA are not affected in any way by Sharia Law

And the main benefit of choosing RAK over any of the other emirates is the fact that you have every single advantage that the UAE offers, combined with the easiest company establishment process in the entire UAE.

3-step process to incorporation

In theory there are 3 very simple steps to achieving incorporation for your company: –

Step 1 – choose your legal entity, license type and facility

Step 2 – apply

Step 3 – receive your business license

In reality, there is a bit more work involved for us as your consultants – however, we guarantee that this will be transparent and stress free for you, our client.

As your consultants we initially have to do due diligence to ensure that the UAE and specifically RAK is appropriate for your business model and personal needs.

We then have to assess which legal entity and license type is legally appropriate for you, before considering certain other conditions to ensure your registration in the UAE is perfectly aligned to your personal requirements and ambitions.  At which point, we progress to walking you through the actual incorporation process.

Because we are uniquely qualified, experience and regulated to incorporate UAE companies for international clients, we make the incorporation process seamless for you.

Your choices for your RAK company

The choices you have, which we help you with, relate to entity, license type and facility and are as follows: –

Entity: by far the majority of overseas businesses and individuals incorporating in the UAE establish an IBC (international business company).

In Ras Al Khaimah these are simply known as RAK offshore companies.

If we determine your personal requirements are best fulfilled via a UAE company, it’s highly likely that this is the company type you will need.

As our client we’re authorised to establish your offshore company in the United Arab Emirates thanks to legislation passed by the government in 2003.

Offshore companies and IBCs are effectively the same; the names are used interchangeably.

With this type of company, any actual business activities must be conducted outside the UAE.

However, because an offshore company can open bank accounts, own real estate and hold intellectual property, they are the most popular company type in the UAE for overseas individuals and businesses.

Other choices exist, and they are either free trade zone companies or non-free zone companies.

Non-free zone companies are either Establishment (E) companies, ideal for a single shareholder, or a Limited Liability Company (LLC) for two or more partners.  Partners may be individuals, companies or both.

Free zone companies are either Free Zone Establishment (FZE) for a single shareholder, or Free Zone LLC for two or more partners.  Partners may be individuals, companies or both.

It’s also possible to set up a branch of a local or foreign company in RAKIA if the parent company holds a valid business licence from any licensing authority – whether in the UAE or elsewhere.

License type: there are 5 to choose from and sometimes the differences can seem very subtle indeed.  We help you identify the one that best represents your intended activity according to the regulations of the UAE.

Consultancy or Services – this allows your company to conduct services or consultancy across any industry.

Trading or General Trading – this allows your company to import, export, distribute, or warehouse goods.

Commercial – this also allows your company to import, export, distribute, or warehouse goods.

Industrial – this allows your company to import raw materials, manufacture, process, package and export finished products.

Media – this allows your company to engage in any media activity.

Facility: your final choices relate to whether you want or need any business space in RAK, and if so, what you want and need.

You can choose from any of the following options and we assist you with every choice you have: –

Flexi facilities, cubicle offices, standard office space, executive offices, warehouses, industrial premises or land.

How to incorporate your UAE company

Incorporating a company in RAK in the UAE is straightforward.  In fact, if the RAK Investment Authority allowed you to, you could easily do it yourself.

However, they don’t.

In order to ensure the regulatory compliance of every applicant, and to avoid applicants making mistakes with their application, the Government of Ras Al Khaimah licenses a small number of registered agents to manage all applications.

We are one of the few registered agents authorised to deliver a full service company incorporation solution.  What this means for you is that we walk you through every step and ensure your legal compliance, and we even open your bank account for you.

Opening a bank account in Dubai

Setting up a company anywhere in the world is relatively straightforward.  And as shown, setting up a UAE company couldn’t be simpler with our assistance.

Getting a bank account on the other hand, can be close to impossible without help.

At Winston Wolfe we have dedicated banking specialists.  Not only that, but we have preferential relationships with international banks in the best global jurisdictions.

Every single preferential relationship has been personally and directly cultivated by Winston Wolfe founder Robert Sládek.

As a result, we are absolutely best placed to help you open a personal or business bank account – whether you choose us for your company incorporation or not.

One of the most popular bank accounts we offer is a business bank account in Dubai, and we regularly assist clients to open bank accounts in Dubai for their RAK IBCs (offshore companies) or their RAK free zone companies.

A bank account in Dubai is also useful for businesses incorporated elsewhere in the world, and even for individual personal account holders.

Why choose Dubai for your bank account?

We will always advise you on the best solution for your personal or company needs.

If Dubai suits your own requirements here’s why it may benefit you: –

  • Dubai is not a tax haven
  • Dubai is not blacklisted
  • Dubai has no tax information exchange agreements
  • Dubai has no exchange of information agreements
  • Dubai has a stable, well established economy, able to withstand stress
  • Dubai has a well regulated banking sector
  • Most global banks have a presence in Dubai
  • Opening an account is easy
  • Dubai has solid anti-money laundering regimes
  • Dubai’s banks have rigorous due diligence procedures
  • The banking sector is mature, safe and well capitalised and regulated
  • Dubai is on the white list of the OECD, FATF and the EU
  • Solid bank account confidentiality for all clients
  • High security standards
  • No credit score
  • Many account currency options (e.g., EUR, USD, GBP, CHF, YEN)
  • Direct bank transfers available
  • Transfers via correspondent banks possible with IBAN and BIC
  • Direct access to worldwide SWIFT system
  • Online and phone banking
  • Debit and credit cards
  • Merchant services for acceptance of credit cards

How to open your Dubai bank account

We will help you open a bank account.  Whether you need a personal account or a business account, we will advise you on the best location, the best bank and the best account type.

We will then walk you through the application process.

Do you want more information about company incorporation in UAE?