Foreign Ownership in UAE

The United Arab Emirates has complex rules when it comes to ownership.  Fortunately it also has a lot of options.

Previously under a law passed in 2015 foreign investors could only hold 49% of a mainland UAE company.  However based on recommendations by the Foreign Direct Investment Committee this was increased to 100% provided it met the criteria of an approved positive list based on activities.  Now Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, president of the UAE has issued the decree which came into effect 1 December 2020 allowing 100% ownership with exceptions of certain strategically important sectors.

In addition the Emirates consisting of seven counties have various offshore company options available usually referred to as freezones.  There are around forty freezones in the Emirates with most of them being located in Dubai.  Each Freezone has its own regulations and therefore depending on the purpose it is important to fully understand these in order to select the best option for you.

If you are looking to invest in the UAE and would like to know more about the company formation options open to you please do not hesitate to contact us.