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How to Move to Dubai From The UK: Full Guide

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Dubai, renowned for its thriving business environment and enticing incentives, stands out as a coveted destination for global entrepreneurs. As a UK citizen, you have the chance to tap into the advantages of establishing a company in Dubai, including full ownership, zero tax liability, complete capital repatriation, and a robust infrastructure.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through the process of initiating a business in Dubai as a UK citizen, shedding light on the unparalleled advantages of conducting business in this global hub through GenZone. With an estimated 240,000 UK residents, Dubai provides a familiar and welcoming setting for UK citizens, fostering a sense of comfort and shared cultural connection.

The substantial UK community offers networking opportunities and a support system for businesses. English is widely spoken, serving as an official language for business in Dubai, facilitating seamless communication and collaboration.

Advantages of Starting a Business in Dubai:

Dubai’s appeal as a business destination arises from numerous advantages, notably:

  • 100% Ownership: Unlike in some other countries, Dubai allows foreign investors to retain full ownership of their businesses, both in free zones and, in some instances, on the Dubai mainland.
  • Zero Tax: Dubai’s tax-free environment provides substantial financial benefits, with no income taxes or corporate taxes.
  • Full Capital Repatriation: Entrepreneurs can freely repatriate their profits and capital back to the UK.
  • Robust Infrastructure: Dubai boasts world-class infrastructure and connectivity, facilitating smooth business operations through a sophisticated road network and one of the Middle East’s largest seaports (Jebel Ali).
  • Global Business Hub: The city’s strategic location and cosmopolitan atmosphere attract multinational businesses, contributing to a diverse and thriving economy.
Different Locations for Dubai Business Setup:

When contemplating starting a business in Dubai, you have two primary options: Dubai mainland or a UAE free zone. Your decision should hinge on the following considerations:

  • Dubai Mainland: Suitable for businesses aiming to trade within the UAE and the region without restrictions. However, there may be a requirement for a local shareholder holding 51% of the company’s stake when starting a mainland company.
  • Dubai Free Zones: Provide 100% ownership, zero customs duties, and facilitate free export and re-export operations. However, companies in free zones cannot conduct business outside the boundaries of the free zone.
The Process of Moving Your Company from the UK to Dubai:

Starting a company in Dubai as a UK citizen follows a standard process. Here’s an overview of the typical documentation process:

  • Reference certificates from shareholders’ bank accounts.
  • Business plan and company document copies.
  • Ultimate beneficial ownership (UBO) and shareholder passport copies.
  • Special application steps for company registration in Dubai.
Starting a Company in Dubai for UK Citizens:

The steps for starting a company in Dubai for UK citizens are straightforward, condensed into five key steps:

  • Choose a business trade name complying with the Department of Economic Development’s terms and conditions.
  • Determine the business activity and legal structure based on the chosen location (mainland or free zone).
  • File for initial approval and gather necessary documents, such as a Memorandum of Association (MoA) or Local Service Agent (LSA) agreement.
  • Complete registration and obtain the company license.
  • Open a corporate bank account in one of the commercial banks available in the UAE
How to Open a Bank Account in the UAE for a UK Citizen:

Opening a bank account in the UAE for a UK citizen is a straightforward process. While specific requirements may vary slightly depending on the bank and the account type, the general steps remain the same. Prepare necessary documents, including:

  • Ultimate Beneficial Ownership (UBO) documents for each shareholder.
  • Articles of Association of the UK company.
  • Business Ejari (tenancy contract or lease agreement for your business premises).
  • Trade License issued by relevant authorities.
  • Memorandum of Association (MoA) or Local Service Agent (LSA) agreement, depending on the legal structure.
  • Chamber of Commerce registration certificate.
  • Share certificate or proof of ownership.
  • Incorporation certificate or proof of company registration.
A Guide to UAE Corporate Tax in 2023
Do UK Citizens Need to Pay Taxes in the UK While in the UAE?

No, UK citizens residing in the UAE do not need to pay taxes on their income in the UK. The United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates have a double taxation agreement (DTA) in place, ensuring that individuals and businesses are not subject to taxation on the same income in both countries.

Hiring GenZone for Business Setup Needs:

For comprehensive assistance throughout the process of starting a company in Dubai as a UK citizen, reach out to GenZone, a leading UAE business setup company.

Starting a company in Dubai as a UK citizen offers a wealth of opportunities and benefits. Dubai’s favorable business climate, coupled with its strategic location and excellent infrastructure, make it an ideal choice for UK investors and entrepreneurs. By following the outlined steps and considering the options available, you can pave the way for a successful venture in the vibrant city of Dubai through GenZone.

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