The UAE is still a top location to do business and to pay less tax …because there is no real tax. The UAE exists of 7 emirates, in each emirate you have so-called freezones. If you work from a freezone, you work tax-free and you can have a company without local (Emirati) shareholder. Every freezone has it owns rules and procedures and fees… We prefer for the moment the RAKEZ freezone. Why?
An overview of RAKEZ
Ras Al Khaimah Economic Zone (RAKEZ) is situated in the heart of Ras Al Khaimah in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The emirate of Ras Al Khaimah has a population of 345,000 persons. Emirati citizens constitute 31% of the population. The capital of the emirate is the city of Ras Al Khaimah, also known as RAK City.
Following the example of other emirates, the government of Ras Al Khaimah established RAKEZ with the aim to support entrepreneurs, start ups, industrialists, and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) by providing them with business licenses and facilities.
At present, RAKEZ is one of the most important economic zones in the UAE. More than 14,000 companies from 1000 countries have a business presence in RAKEZ. Those companies operate in over 50 industries.
Advantages of RAKEZ companies
RAKEZ is preferred by investors because of its (i) tax-free status (ii) cost-efficiency, (iii) strategic location, (iv) customizable business packages, and (v) simplified administrative processes. These five advantages will be examined in more detail below.
- Tax-free status
No corporate or personal income taxes apply to the UAE, including Ras Al Khaimah and the other six emirates. Hence, companies registered in RAKEZ can fully benefit from the favourable tax environment.
The costs of living and the costs associated with registering and operating a company in Ras Al Khaimah are about 50% lower than in other parts of the UAE.
- Strategic location
31% of the world’s population is reachable within four hours’ flight time from RAKEZ. Furthermore, companies in RAKEZ have access to international airports, multi-lane superhighways, and five seaports. Ras Al Khaimah’s Saqr Port, one of those five seaports, is the largest bulk commodity port in the Middle East.
- Customizable business packages
RAKEZ offers a wide range of licenses covering various business activities. Furthermore, it provides an excellent IT/Telecom infrastructure, shared workstations, different size offices, and access to business centres with administrative and secretarial support. RAKEZ allows investors to customize their business packages according to their business needs.
- Simplified administrative processes
RAKEZ allows investors to easily register and manage their companies by using a self-service client portal accessible 24/7. The portal is a one-stop-shop solution enabling investors to make various filings quickly and efficiently.
If you go for a visa, it stays valid when you only one visit per year and not two like in Dubai!
Company registration process
The company registration process in RAKEZ includes three basic steps, namely, (i) customizing a business package, (ii) submitting an application, and (iii) getting a business license. After an investor chooses its customized business package, he or she needs to submit an application together with a number of accompanying documents (e.g., passport copies and passport-sized photographs).
Following the submission of the required documents and the payment of the applicable fees, the applicant needs to receive an immigration pre-approval from RAKEZ and sign a set of legal documents. Next, the applicant will get his/her business licenses and company formation documents by email.
Once the applicant obtains a license, he or she may proceed with sending visa applications allowing him or her to reside in the UAE. Visa applications can be submitted through the RAKEZ e-services portal. In about 8 working days from submitting the visa application, the applicant will receive an Entry Permit. The next step the applicant needs to take is to apply for visa stamping and an Emirati ID as well as to complete a medical testing process. The final step is receiving a stamped visa. A scanned copy of the residence visa will be emailed to the applicant.
The entire process (from submitting an application for registering a company to receiving a residence visa) lasts about 26 working days.
The registration costs vary depending on the business package chosen. For example, a 3-years plan including (i) the registration of an FZ-LLC company, (ii) a Services License, (iii) a Flexi Desk and (iv) one investor visa costs about AED 48,820 (USD 13,290). The Flexi Desk mentioned above includes one executive desk and chair, a dedicated phone number and email address, shared fax, 10 hours of free usage per week, one shared computer, a possibility to use a laptop instead of a shared computer, and furnished and semi-enclosed workstations.
Please note that the registration costs mentioned above are for guidance purposes only and are subject to changes. RAKEZ is much cheaper than the other Emirates!
AND!! The RAKEZ has offices abroad where you do the work without going to the UAE!
If you need any assistance with regard to registering a company in RAKEZ, please contact us. We would be glad to assist you.