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    Start Your Business Setup Journey in Abu Dhabi with UAE’s # 1 Business Advisory & Consultancy since 2002 #Business Without Limits.

    Company Formation in Abu Dhabi

    Abu Dhabi’s dynamic business market, known for its robust economy and diverse opportunities, is an ideal destination for entrepreneurs. Whether you’re considering company formation, business setup, or LLC company formation in Abu Dhabi, ADAM Global is here to guide you.
    With our extensive experience and comprehensive services, we navigate you through the complexities of the process, ensuring a smooth and successful establishment of your business. Trust ADAM Global to turn your business aspirations in Abu Dhabi into reality.
    You are wondering How to setup business in Abu Dhabi? Browse through these quick links on this page to find out more on company set up in the UAE.

    Quick Facts about Abu Dhabi

    • Social Security: Abu Dhabi offers a comprehensive social security system that covers all employees, regardless of their nationality. The system provides benefits such as health insurance, retirement pensions, and unemployment benefits.
    • GDP% growth: Abu Dhabi's GDP has been growing steadily in recent years and is expected to continue to grow in the coming years. In 2022, the GDP grew by 5.7%, and is forecast to grow by 6.2% in 2023.
    • Ease of doing business: Abu Dhabi is a relatively easy place to do business. The World Bank's Doing Business 2023 report ranked Abu Dhabi 15th out of 190 economies for ease of doing business.
    • Free zones: Abu Dhabi has several free zones, which offer foreign investors several benefits, such as 100% foreign ownership, and no customs duties.
    • The capital of the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
    • The second-largest emirate in the UAE, after Dubai.
    • Home to the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC), one of the largest oil companies in the world.
    • A major financial and business centre in the Middle East.
    • A popular tourist destination, known for its beaches, desert safaris, and cultural attractions.

    Benefits Of Starting or Expanding a Business in Abu Dhabi

    • Strategic location: Abu Dhabi is in the heart of the Middle East, making it a gateway to a market of over 2 billion people. The city is also a major transportation hub, with easy access to air, sea, and land routes.
    • Easy ownership policies: Foreign investors can own 100% of their businesses in Abu Dhabi. This makes it easy for businesses to attract foreign investment and to expand their operations.
    • Strong Fianacial Market: Abu Dhabi is home to some of the world's largest sovereign wealth funds. These funds provide a significant source of capital for the financial market and help to attract foreign investment. The Abu Dhabi government also invest funds in businesses through Investment Authority is a sovereign wealth fund owned by the Emirate.
    • Skilled workforce: Abu Dhabi has a skilled workforce that is well-educated and multilingual. This makes it easy to find the talent you need to grow your business.
    • Strong economic growth: Abu Dhabi's economy is growing rapidly, which creates opportunities for businesses of all sizes. Facts(numbers)

    Which Authorities Are Responsible for Company Formation in Abu Dhabi?

    Abu Dhabi offers several jurisdictions for company setup, each with its own advantages and regulations. Here are the key jurisdictions:

    • Abu Dhabi Mainland: Businesses set up in the mainland are licensed by the Department of Economic Development (DED). They can operate freely within the UAE following all the regulations.
    • Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM): This is an international financial centre for local, regional, and international institutions. ADGM offers a range of benefits including 100% foreign ownership, and a legal system based on English common law.
    • Khalifa Economic Zone Abu Dhabi (KEZAD): This is an industrial zone catering to manufacturing and logistics, chemical industries and more such companies. It offers benefits like low operating costs, excellent infrastructure, and proximity to Khalifa Port.
    • Masdar City Free Zone: This is a green, sustainable city and a free zone that focuses on clean technology and renewable energy. It offers benefits like 100% foreign ownership, and a fast and easy setup process.
    • Twofour54: This is a media and entertainment free zone offering benefits like 100% foreign ownership, and access to media talent and services.

    How to register your business in Abu Dhabi/The Process -


    Share your ideas and budget with us, and we’ll tailor a path for you, guiding you to the ideal location and outlining the specific requirements for setting up your business in Abu Dhabi. 


    At ADAM Global, we pledge to deliver personalized guidance, ensuring you understand the necessary documentation and costs involved for a mainland company setup in Abu Dhabi. Your success is our commitment. 


    Receive your Abu Dhabi Mainland or Freezone company license and all other essential paperwork, hand-delivered by our dedicated ADAM Global advisor. We’re with you every step of the way. 

    Company Formation in Khalifa Economic Zone Abu Dhabi (KEZAD)

    KEZAD earlier known as KIZAD is the largest freezones in the Middle East and is planning to become the largest freezone of the world. It is strategically located with access to both sea and airports, making it an ideal location for logistics, manufacturing and more such businesses.

    KEZAD offers a wide range of benefits to businesses, including 100% foreign ownership, zero import or re-export duties, no restrictions on capital repatriation, and competitive lease prices. It also provides world-class infrastructure and integrated transport links, with easy access to markets across the Middle East, Africa, and Asia.

    The zone is divided into areas dedicated to different industries such as aluminium, steel, automotive, pharmaceuticals, food, and packaging among others. This allows businesses to benefit from synergies with other companies in the same industry.

    Company Formation in ADGM

    By enrolling with the Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), overseas investors can launch new ventures in the UAE's vibrant financial sector. Establishing a business in ADGM is synonymous with joining an internationally recognized financial centre of excellence. It hosts some of the world's most substantial sovereign wealth funds and offers impressive liquidity, attributed to considerable private wealth and a network of influential partners. With its advantageous tax environment and unique position bridging Eastern and Western markets, ADGM stands as a premier destination for business setup.

    The Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) is a broad-based international financial centre and caters to various sectors. Here are some of the main sectors:

    • Banking and Finance: This includes commercial banking, investment banking, private banking, and Islamic banking.
    • Asset Management and Private Banking: ADGM provides a robust platform for asset management, wealth management, and private banking services.
    • Insurance and Reinsurance: It offers a conducive environment for insurance and reinsurance companies, brokers, and intermediaries.
    • Capital Market: ADGM supports a wide range of capital market activities, including exchanges, clearing houses, and other trading platforms.
    • Professional Services: This includes legal services, auditing services, consulting services, and other corporate service providers.
    • Family Businesses and Wealth Management: ADGM has a legal framework in place to support the needs of family businesses and wealth management services.
    • Fintech and Innovation: ADGM has a dedicated regulatory framework to support fintech companies and innovative businesses.
    • Sustainable Finance: ADGM is committed to promoting sustainable finance and has initiatives in place to support businesses in this sector.

    What is Dual License Policy in Abu Dhabi?

    The Dual License Policy in Abu Dhabi is a significant initiative that allows businesses operating in free zones to expand their operations into the mainland of Abu Dhabi.

    Under this policy, free zone companies can obtain a license from the Department of Economic Development (DED) in Abu Dhabi without the need for a physical office space in the mainland. This means that businesses can operate both in the free zone and in the mainland under the same ownership.

    The Dual License Policy is beneficial for businesses as it allows them to tap into the wider UAE market, participate in government tenders, and conduct business with a larger pool of clients. It also provides businesses with the flexibility to operate across multiple jurisdictions, thereby expanding their reach and potential for growth.

    However, it's important to note that certain activities may still require approvals from specific government entities, and businesses should consult with a business setup advisor to understand the specific requirements and procedures.

    What the role of SPC in offshore business operation

    The Supreme Petroleum Council (SPC) in Abu Dhabi plays a crucial role in the offshore business operations, particularly in the oil and gas sector. Here's how:

    Policy Making and RegulationThe SPC sets the policy and regulations related to offshore exploration and production. Companies involved in offshore operations must adhere to these policies and regulations.

    LicensingThe SPC is involved in the process of granting licenses for offshore exploration and production. Companies wishing to engage in offshore operations must obtain the necessary licenses.

    SupervisionThe SPC supervises offshore operations to ensure they are carried out in accordance with the established laws, regulations, and standards. This includes ensuring that operations are conducted in a manner that is safe and environmentally responsible.

    Investment DecisionsThe SPC makes major investment decisions related to the petroleum sector, including offshore operations. These decisions can influence the level of activity in the offshore sector and create opportunities for businesses.

    Resource ManagementThe SPC is responsible for managing Abu Dhabi's petroleum resources, including offshore oil and gas reserves. It ensures that these resources are used efficiently and sustainably.

    Ready to Setup Your Business ?

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    The process involves several steps including deciding on a business activity, choosing a legal structure, applying for a trade license, and registering with the relevant authorities.
    ADGM caters to various sectors including banking and finance, asset management, insurance, capital markets, professional services, family businesses, fintech, and sustainable finance.
    Depending on your business activity, you can obtain a commercial, professional, industrial, tourism, agricultural, craftsmanship, building and construction, import/export, e-commerce, or freelance license.
    In free zones and certain sectors in the mainland (as per the new Commercial Companies Law), foreigners can own 100% of the company.
    The minimum capital requirement varies depending on the type of business activity and the legal form of the company.
    For mainland companies, a physical office is typically required. However, under the dual license policy, free zone companies can operate in the mainland without a physical office.
    The timeframe can vary depending on the type of business, the chosen jurisdiction, and the speed of fulfilling all the requirements. It can range from a few days to a few weeks.
    The UAE has a favourable tax environment with less corporate tax for businesses, and a 5% VAT applied to certain goods and services.
    Yes, when you set up a company in Abu Dhabi, you and your dependents can be eligible for residence visas.
    ADAM Global provides personalized guidance throughout the company formation process, helping you understand the necessary documentation, costs, and procedures involved.
    Yes, many aspects of the company formation process can be completed remotely, especially in the free zones. However, some steps may require your presence or a visit to the UAE.
    Yes, you can change your local sponsor after the company is set up. However, this process involves legal procedures and agreements.
    Yes, you can change your local sponsor after the company is set up. However, this process involves legal procedures and agreements.
    A trade license in Abu Dhabi is typically valid for one year and needs to be renewed annually.
    The documents required may vary based on the type of business and jurisdiction. Generally, you would need a passport copy, visa copy, NOC from the current sponsor (for UAE residents), and a business plan.
    Yes, you can have multiple business activities under one trade license, but they should be related, and it depends on the rules of the licensing authority.
    Trade license renewal in Abu Dhabi involves clearing any pending fines, renewing your tenancy contract, and applying for renewal with the Department of Economic Development or the relevant free zone authority.
    If you don't renew your trade license, you may have to pay fines, and your business could be blacklisted, frozen, or shut down.
    Yes, you can cancel your trade license by applying to the Department of Economic Development or the relevant free zone authority, clearing all liabilities, and cancelling visas and permits associated with the business.
    Yes, you can upgrade your trade license by applying for additional activities with the licensing authority.

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