Dubai is by far one of the most popular destinations for professionals looking to relocate their businesses. Statistics in fact show that in 2022, just over 9,852,218 visa transactions were granted, with 4,499,712 residency transactions. And the appetite to live and work in the 'Golden City' shows no sign of abating any time soon.
One of the most popular aspects of relocating a business to Dubai is the opportunity to work in one of the many Free zone areas in the city. However, the rules and regulations surrounding freezone areas are very precise, and not all businesses can decide to relocate to these areas.
Free zones are economic areas where goods and services can be traded, and are also known as “free trade zones” or “free zone authority”. These areas attract 0% tax rates, preferential customs duty rates and 100% import and export tax exemption.
So, what is the bureaucracy around it?
What is a Free Zone?
Relocating or setting up a business in a Dubai freezone will allow you to trade tax-free with minimal restrictions. Businesses operating in the free zones can in fact produce, import and export goods without paying any customs duty. And these advantages are amplified by the fact that most free zones are strategically placed in proximity of national borders, airports and seaports for maximum trade capabilities.
There are 44 free zones across the UAE, attracting foreign investment that is ultimately contributing to the non-oil GDP growth of the national economy. The right free zone for you will depend on the nature of your business, as these vary in location, types of business they support, setup costs and paperwork needed. Another important aspect of free zones is the fact they are ideal for “privacy-conscious” entrepreneurs. There is in fact 100% foreign ownership with no open directory of company details, meaning that any sensitive corporate information – such as shareholder details – cannot be disclosed to the public.
The UAE has long been an attractive destination for entrepreneurs from all over the world, with incredible benefits for keen working professionals. The local economy is in fact thriving, with more scope for investment and income sources than ever before. And it’s no surprise that the Dubai free zones are dominating many industries, providing investors and business people with great access to bustling services.
Within each free zone and its authority, multiple corporate activities can be undertaken; such as infrastructure, media, education, construction and retail. But when it comes to setting up or relocating a business to Dubai, there is a lot to learn. This is why all applications to start operating in one of the free zones must be filed through an agent or a PRO (public relations officer).
Before you can start trading in one of the free zone areas, you will need to apply for (and obtain) a Free zone visa. This lets you work in designated economic areas in the UAE and includes an investor visa and an employee visa. And, if you’re planning to have your family relocate with you to the UAE with you, you will be able to apply for a “dependants visa” after you have been granted your investor or employee free zone visa. Getting a visa can be a tedious process, due to the bureaucracy surrounding it, however, using a PRO to guide and support you through the process will make things run a lot smoother.
What other types of visas exist?
The most common type of visa for professionals looking to relocate to Dubai is the “Golden Visa”. This enables wealthy or highly skilled foreigners to live, work and study in the UAE without the need of a national sponsor. Though the bureaucracy around it is fairly straightforward, visa legislations are always changing, so it’s best to use a specialist PR officer to deal with your application. This usually means that it can take just under two weeks to receive your Golden visa for living, working or studying in Dubai.
Golden visas can have a duration of five or ten years. For an investor visa, you will be able to stay in Dubai for three years, while, for an employment visa you will be able to stay between two and three years.
At Time & Motion, we are experts in supporting professionals with their Golden visa applications, with the majority of our customers being from the UK, Europe or the US. If you need Dubai visas quickly, having a quick conversation with our helpful and friendly team will take you one step closer to your dream.
We will take care of all the paperwork, ultimately saving you the time and hassle of having to deal with it yourself. And this also means that you won’t risk getting fined or penalised for late filing. Once the application goes through, you can expect to receive your Golden visa in a matter of days.
Why use Time & Motion PRO?
At Time & Motion, we are experts in dealing with the legal and bureaucratic procedures surrounding visas, licences and work permits. As mentioned, all free zone applicants will need to hire a PRO to represent them in their visa application and act as a liaison between the applicant and the government.
Choosing the right public relations officer can affect how quickly and efficiently your free zone visa application is processed.
Our Time & Motion PR officers have decades of experience in dealing with the bureaucratic processes behind free zone visa applications. When it comes to setting up a business and relocating to Dubai, we can speed up the process with our expertise, so that you can start working and living in the 'City of Gold' sooner.
Call Time & Motion today and we'll help you navigate the Dubai visa process, quickly and effortlessly. Just a single call and you'll be one step closer to your goal!