Department of Economic Development (DED) License Timelines

Timelines and Procedure in business days

(The below is applicable to General Trading and Commercial licenses that do not require external approvals)

Day 1 – Submit all requirements and make payment for Sponsor / PRO fees.

Day 2 – BIZ will submit necessary documents to Dubai DED. Timeline and the Memorandum of Association / Local Service Agent Agreement / Civil Works Agreement (whichever is applicable) draft will be received by the client.*

Day 3 – Trade Name Reservation Certificate is obtained.

Note: The Dubai DED reserves the right to refuse or amend your company name even after approval.

Day 4 – Application will be submitted for the Initial Approval

Day 8 – Initial Approval Certificate is obtained

Day 11 – Submission of Commercial Lease Agreement and EJARI Certificate to BIZ. **

Day 12 – Client approves the final draft of the Memorandum of Association/ Local Service Agent Agreement and/or Civil Works Agreement.

Day 13 – Once the Memorandum of Association/Local Service Agent Agreement/Civil Works Agreement is approved by the client, the expatriate shareholder/s is required to personally be present along with the Local Partner/Local Service Agent or it’s representative to sign the incorporation documents before the Notary Public in Dubai.

Note: A BIZ Senior Government Liaison Officer who holds the Power of Attorney (POA) to sign in behalf of BIZ for the purposes of company incorporation will meet you at the Notary Public. This Individual does not hold any interest in the Corporate entity. Should any of the parties fail to appear at the Notary within 30 minutes of the assigned time and re-scheduling will be required, a no show fee of 1,050 AED will be imposed.

Day 14 – Upon confirmation that the lease is appropriate, the file is submitted to DED for Issuance of Payment Voucher. This will be the license fee of the company.

Day 16 – Issuance of Payment Voucher.

Day 16 – Trade License is released once payment is made.

* The legal agreements have been approved by BIZ lawyers and is cannot be amended. Should you wish to make any changes, you will have to draft the agreement with your own lawyers and send it to BIZ for approval.

** Following receipt of the preliminary approval from the DED, the appropriate commercial rental agreements for proposed premises must be provided. Should the Lease Agreement and EJARI Certificate not be provided within 1 month of the initial approval, there is an additional PRO fee of 3,150 AED.

Note: Certain business activities require additional approvals from the government agencies. This can result in the timelines being extended by up to 45 days (depending on which government authority) and an additional PRO fee of 3,150 AED will apply, excluding government fees.

The above timelines are based on our past experience. If your chosen business activity requires additional inspections and approvals, timelines will vary according to the government authority involved.