How to get your free zone license with IFZA?

How to get your free zone license with IFZA?

Strategically located in the United Arab Emirates, IFZA has grown to become a dynamic business community in the region. As a Free Zone community, IFZA offers business formation packages that are strategically positioned to support entrepreneurs and businesses who want to set up their company in Dubai.


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The benefits that IFZA offers include 100% foreign ownership of commercial enterprises, transparent and competitive pricing, and streamlined processes that reduce startup time for businesses. In this article, we will cover all the details concerning a Free Zone license.

Types of Licenses Offered by IFZA Dubai

IFZA offers various types of Free Zone Licenses:

  • Commercial License: Businesses engaged in trading activities can apply for a commercial license which permits them to import, export, store and distribute goods. Commercial Licenses also permit businesses to offer a range of services such as brokerage.
  • Professional License: Professional Licenses are geared towards businesses that provide consultancy and other expert professional services to businesses and individuals in varied domains.
  • Branch Office: Foreign incorporated companies may also register a branch at IFZA, however, the activity of the proposed branch needs to be consistent with the activity offered by the parent company.
  • General Trading License: This specialized Commercial Business License gives you the ability to trade a wide variety of goods in varied models such as B2B, C2B, B2C, and others.

How to Choose the Right Free Zone License for Your Business

Choosing the right location for your business could be a daunting exercise, however, the right type of Free Zone License for your business will largely be determined by your preferred business activities. For example, if you want to mainly sell products, then the Commercial Licenses are most suitable for you, while Professional Licenses are most suited for service-oriented businesses.

Standard IFZA Free Zone Business Licenses offers a choice of up to 3 business activities under one License with the option to apply for more. Additionally, IFZA offers the flexibility to combine Commercial and Professional business activities under one License. It is important to note that some business activities may require third party approvals from related Dubai- or UAE-federal regulatory authorities.

How to Set Up Free Zone Business in Dubai?

Dubai’s Free Zones offer varied forms of business, with the only mandatory requirement for this is that you should have a valid business license.

Here are some important points to know about setting up a business in IFZA and the Free Zone license requirements:

  • Forming a Legal Entity: IFZA-registered companies are incorporated as FZCO companies. Business entities who are set up elsewhere can also set up branch offices at IFZA, under conditions specified above.
  • Paid-up Capital: There are no set standards related to minimum capital requirement inside Free Zones but some may require a certain amount of paid-up capital which ranges between 50,000-1,50,000 AED. IFZA requires no paid-up capital.
  • Apply for a Valid Trade Name: You must apply for a legal trade name to run your business. Your proposed trade name must follow guidelines and regulations set by the Authority.
  • Apply for a Business License: After ensuring the above and going through license requirements, you can apply for the business license that is related to you business type.

How to Get Your Free Zone License with IFZA?

IFZA offers many advantages to businesses operating in Free Zones. Among the main advantages is 100% foreign ownership and the low tax environment and the streamlined process of setting up a company.

Below is all the information you need to know about getting a business license with IFZA:

  • Document Requirements: An individual needs to have a passport copy, passport-size photograph, and, if the applicant is in the country, copies of the Emirates ID and Residence Visa. In the case of corporate shareholders, the requirements include a notarized and attested board resolution, memorandum & articles of association of the corporate shareholder, valid trade license, certificate of incorporation and copies of the passport, photo, and Emirates ID of the shareholders.
  • Processing of documents for registration: The documents will be submitted to the requested portal and once approved, the business will receive two electronic legal (e-legal) forms which will need to be signed before issuing incorporation documents.
  • License approval & issuing of certificate: Once the compliances and formalities are followed, the business gets license approval and can avail certificate to run the business.

Once your company receives the license you are all good to set up and you can start doing business in the UAE.

Advantages of an IFZA Company Setup

The following are the main benefits of the IFZA company setup:

  1. Business owners do not need to be in the UAE during the company formation process, since IFZA offers remote company setup through its global network of Professional Partners.
  2. Businesses get access to opportunities in Dubai and UAE markets to become a part of a dynamic economic landscape.
  3. Businesses can get access to private offices, individual desks, and specialized office suites are among the many workplace solutions that IFZA offers.
  4. Additional support beyond company formation through the IFZA ecosystem that includes access to medical insurance coverage, corporate banking assistance, professional training, and others.
  5. Access to faster business and legal approvals with the registration of branch offices.
  6. No physical presence of business owners is required during registration.
  7. No paid-up capital is needed.

In this blog, we broke down the process of applying for a Free Zone license into easy-to-follow steps, explaining what is needed for each step and why. If you are still in doubt, speak to an IFZA Professional Partner today to learn how to get your Free Zone license from trained experts.

NOTE: All content on this page along with the downloadable guides is created solely for educational purposes. The information provided is accurate to the best of our knowledge, and it may not reflect any changes or developments that occur after the date of publication.

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