Small Business license cost in Dubai, UAE

Setting up a business in Dubai is not a dream anymore. But it comes with a price to pay. Before taking the first step, it is vital to get a better understanding of the Small Business license cost in Dubai.

Read this article further and you will find the comprehensive guide on establishing a business whether small scale or big.  There are factors that you have to follow.

Overview of Small Business License

Every business needs to have a trade license regardless of how big of a set up you are planning to own. Without license, no business is able to run in the United Arab Emirates. The direct figure for the Dubai trade license cost can be estimated to AED 8000 – AED 10,000.  On the contrary, there are factors that can impact this amount.

Understanding the Importance of Small Business Licenses

For a streamlined business setup in Dubai, getting a license is too important to overlook.  This comes with the guarantee of legitimacy, making your company easily acceptable and trust-worthy. Furthermore, this ensures compliance with the law enforcement and allows you to gain access to the thriving market. 

Types of Small Business Licenses in Dubai:

To join the growing market of Dubai, your business is sure to acquire success. But for this, securing a license is as important as your startup outline. Before diving into the process, you must know the following 6 categories of license in Dubai.

1- Commercial Business License in Dubai

This type of license is important because it comes with trading and transportation permits. This way, you can expand your business within and outside the UAE.   

2- Agricultural Business License in Dubai

If your company involves the agriculture sector, you must apply for an agriculture business license in Dubai. This gives the permission to run your business seamlessly with all the necessary methods and equipment such installing machinery and adherence to the ground.

3- Craftmanship Business License in Dubai

Any skilled person who particularly possesses specific skills and is seeking to utilize their expertise via business, opting for this type of license would be their ideal pick. Be it, carpenters, blacksmiths, electricians and plumbers, everyone can start your dream service.

4- Professional Business License in Dubai

 This license is required to establish a business with the company or Individual who wish to earn by utilizing their expertise. This stays relevant for sectors like IT instruction, insurance etc.

5- Industrial Business License in Dubai

This license is applicable on the companies that use heavy machinery. Preparing large scale products like dairy products, meat items etc. all the industrial business must go for this type of license.

6- Tourism Business License in Dubai

All the companies that offer tour facilities be it travel agencies, hotels, cruise boats apply for this  license. It permits them for all their logistics activities. 

Factors Affecting Small Business License Cost

The aspects are ranging from your business activity to the rented office.  Therefore, before making your mind fixated on these numbers, go through the factors below to know their influence:

Business Type:

The sort of business you operate, also referred to as your business activity or business type, is a major factor in how much a small business license in Dubai costs. When determining the cost of your license, it’s crucial to take the sort of business you plan to start into account, as licenses are approved and given depending on the selected business activity which can be:

  • Professional license
  • Commercial license
  • Tourism license
  • Industrial license

Location Of business: 

Where you will set up your business is also considered. 

  • Mainland: Business setup in Dubai Mainland enables trading within the premises of the United Arab Emirates. Operating on the Dubai mainland allows you to trade anywhere within the emirate. You can get to know the cost once you determine the License type, location of office and business type. 
  • Free Zone: The cost depends on which zone you are selecting. It varies with the different zones and business types.

Rented Working Space in Dubai

The cost of a company license will go up by 2.5 percent if you rent an office. As per the Department of Economic Development’s regulations, companies are required to pay 2.5% of their total rent towards the cost of obtaining a business license in Dubai. Therefore, it’s important to make sure you hire an inexpensive office space in Dubai. 

The Quantity of Business Partners

The price of a small business license in Dubai may vary depending on the number of business partners you have. In general, lower costs come from fewer partners, thus in order to properly control your expenses, you must organize your firm structure accordingly.

Government Fees and Charges

The total cost of getting a small company license in Dubai includes government fees and levies, however this is usually less than the license price itself. Below is a summary of what to anticipate:

Government Fee Types:

Department of Economic Development (DED) costs: If you’re establishing up on the mainland, the DED could levy processing costs. These are often very little, ranging from AED 500 (about $135 USD) to a few hundred Dirhams.

Knowledge and Innovation Fees: The government of Dubai implemented these levies as mandates to encourage knowledge-based initiatives. Usually, they are a set, little fee, maybe about AED 10 (about $3 USD) each license.

Dubai Trade License Costs and Charges

The kind of economic activity determines how much a DED licence costs. After deducting all additional expenses, the price range is between AED 15,000 and AED 50,000.

Steps to Obtain a Small Business License

Following are the steps that you need to go though one by one if you want to obtain the license.

Research and Planning:

1: Get Assistance Consultants in Dubai

Discussing and getting the assistance from the consultant will help you clear your doubts and boost the business setup. The Connectfz is the helping hand you need that will guide you to manage all the business plans efficiently.

2: Choose a Legal Structure

The United Arab Emirates offers different structures like LLC, Sole propriety or any branch of international entity. Choose what aligns with your locations and get the license you need along with government assistance.

3: Register a Distinctive Business Name

The company name needs to fulfill the stringent naming guidelines used in the United Arab Emirates. Names cannot contain any allusions to religious terminology or any language that is derogatory or profane.

4: Choose Location

To get the specific benefits choose the right jurisdiction i.e free zone or mainland.

Mainland- comes with a wide diverse business scope and links to the entire UAE local market.

Free Zone Offers tax relaxations and minimal regulations.

5:  Getting your visas

Apply for the visa to access residency and working permit like Freelance Visa UAE. This will help you run your business smoothly. Also, you can sponsor your dependents later too.

6: Find the Right Rental Space

Select the space that suits the type and nature of your business best with the reliable tenancy. 

Application Process

Select a UAE free zone or mainland location and an appropriate legal structure before submitting an application. Choose a free zone that best fits your company’s objectives as each one serves a certain industry.

Next, follow the naming guidelines and register your firm name with the UAE Registry Office. Next, submit an application to the DED to have the MOA and AOA of your business attested by notary.

Get residency permits for yourself and any dependents you intend to sponsor, as well. The cost of your licensing is influenced by permanent office space and office rent.

License Renewal Process

Renewing your small business license in Dubai makes sure your business runs smoothly. Hence, it is an important step. Below are the details about it.

General Steps:

  • Keep A Check On Your Renewal Date: Take the expiry date into acknowledgement and initiate the process a month before to prevent yourself paying extra charges.
  • Gather Required Documents:  These usually include:
  • Copy of your existing trade license
  • Valid tenancy agreement (minimum one month validity)
  • Updated passport copies of business owners/partners
  • Any required insurance documents
  • Choose Renewal Method:  You can renew your license through:
  • DED Service Centers: Visit a Department of Economic Development (DED) service center in Dubai and submit your application and documents in person.
  • Online Portal: The DED offers an online portal for license renewal. You can access it through the Invest in Dubai website ( This method requires a registered account and digital copies of your documents.
  • Pay Renewal Cost:  after submitting the application, the voucher will be received. You have to pay the mentioned fee online or through the DED service center that is up to you. 
  • Collection:  You’ll soon receive your renewed business license.

Benefits of Having a Small Business License in Dubai

Benefits of Having a Small Business License in Dubai

Dubai ends up being the best place to start a business, no matter how big or little. Dubai is superior to many other places in the world in this regard. The reasons why most investors want to start small businesses in Dubai are explained by the advantages we’ve listed below. 

Legitimacy and Credibility

The licensing body checks that the information you provided about your business is accurate and complies with the law. Usually, licenses may be checked online via the DED or free zone websites. In addition, authorities have the right to periodically check your company to make sure it keeps up with the rules specified in the license.

Access to Government Contracts and Tenders

Increased income: Getting government contracts may build your credibility and greatly increase the income of your company. Market Recognition: Gaining contracts can improve your business’s standing and draw in new business from the private sector.

Enhanced Business Opportunities

Strategic Location: Dubai is a starting point for travel throughout the Middle East. Having a license gives you access to a sizable, highly-affluent local market.

Zones of Free Will: You may network with possible partners and related firms in your industry by connecting with particular free zones.

Business Setting:

expedited Procedures: Dubai, particularly in free zones, has a comparatively expedited company setup procedure when compared to some other areas.

Government Support: The government of Dubai actively encourages entrepreneurship and offers a range of programmes to help small companies, including access to funding and subsidized workspaces.

Tax Benefits (Free Zones): For a limited time, free zones provide substantial tax advantages, such as exemptions from corporation and income taxes, enabling you to reinvest revenues back into your company. 


Establishing a business in Dubai is a simple yet intricate procedure, especially for those with experience. We can assist you all the way through the process when you work in Dubai and the United Arab Emirates. Reach out for a better approach!

Harneet Bhatia

Harneet-Bhatia-imgHarneet BhatiaShe is a renowned Business Sales and Golden Visa Expert, specializing in facilitating business setups in Dubai. With a comprehensive portfolio of services, she adeptly assists clients in navigating the complexities of corporate bank account creation, addressing fines issues, and managing visa services. Her expertise extends to providing VAT services and obtaining necessary DM approvals, ensuring a seamless and efficient process for her clients.

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