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Offshore company formation in Dubai (2019 guide)




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The UAE’s trajectory from small trading village to global trading hub has been astronomical. Today, it is one of the world’s most prestigious destinations with entrepreneurs from every corner of the globe flocking to do business in this welcoming environment.

Within this thriving business landscape are many free zones offering entrepreneurs a host of benefits including a zero percent rate on both personal and corporate income, customs tax exemption and no currency restrictions.

Setting up in a free zone also allows you to register what is known as a UAE offshore company. When registering an offshore company, your business has special status within a free zone, meaning while you are registered within the UAE, all business activities must take place overseas.

There are a number of great benefits to UAE offshore company registration including privacy and additional tax efficiencies. What’s more, the set up process is both fast and affordable.

What is offshore company setup?

 There are a number of key differences between a UAE offshore company setup and a regular free zone business. For one, all company business activities, with the exception of real estate investments and holding shares in other companies, must take place outside of the UAE.

What’s more, while an offshore company can open a business bank account in the UAE, its owners are not automatically eligible for residency visas. It is also not possible to convert an offshore company setup into a regular free zone setup at any time.

Offshore companies are also not permitted to open offices within the UAE and are not required to submit to an annual audit.

UAE offshore company setups can be used for a number of purposes, from international trading and tax planning to real estate acquisition and share dealing.

Advantages of offshore company ownership

There are many advantages to opening an offshore company in the UAE.

If you are looking for fast, discreet and tax-efficient company ownership, then this could be the setup for you. Offshore company ownership is generally less expensive than free zone or mainland setups, incorporation takes just a few days, and its owners are not listed on any public registration of investors.

Furthermore, UAE offshore companies are permitted to carry out a wide range of activities and are free from all taxes. Benefits of a UAE offshore setup include:

How to register a UAE offshore company

Working with an experienced company formation consultant is the easiest way to register an offshore company in the UAE. We can manage every stage of the application and registration process for you to ensure you avoid costly mistakes or unnecessary delays.

The specific documents required to register your UAE offshore company may differ depending on your company requirements. However, in most cases, you will be expected to provide:

Your company is also required to have a corporate bank account. Opening a corporate bank account is not always easy here in the UAE and can require some guidance.

Working with an expert in UAE offshore company formation at this stage can make for a much smoother process. AYS has strong relationships with many of the financial institutions that operate in the UAE – from Emirates NBD and Mashreq to Santander and HSBC. We can advise not only on how to open a corporate bank account but also how to stay compliant with your obligations to make sure it remains open.

Starting an offshore business in the UAE

While the process for starting a business in Dubai can be said to be both simple and affordable, it does require a little prior knowledge of local licensing laws.

With this in mind, it may be hard to do on your own. Fortunately, AYS can help. If you are unaware of laws and regulations that surround starting a business, that does not have to be a hurdle. We can take care of that for you.

AYS Consultancy and offshore company setups go hand in hand along with business registration in Dubai, Ajman and Ras-al-Khaimah in the UAE.

Our clients find offshore company setups to be the best way of managing businesses as they offer the most tax-efficient strategies for entrepreneurs. We found the most important benefits are providing the freedom for your commercial operations, ease of running business and high level privacy, especially when twinned with a Nominee Director. As a tax free hub, the UAE  is considered one of the most highly-renowned places to register an offshore company for all of the above.

We assist our clientele efficiently with business licensing, registration, and related solutions. All we need from you is a little information about you and your business and a few documents. Then, you sit back and relax while we manage every step of your license application for you, liaising with all relevant authorities and government bodies and keeping you updated along the way.

When you work with a company formation expert, you don’t just get our expertise, you get total peace of mind that your license application is in safe hands – helping to protect you from delays, confusing forms and mountains of paperwork.