Dubai: What Makes It the Business Incubator & Accelerator?

Author: Anirudhe Ghosh
Jul 26, 2022

Dubai has emerged as one of the best business grounds globally. In 2021, the UAE exhibited an unprecedented CGPR of 3.8% in its GDP, claiming the highest growth in the region. With its diversified economy, Dubai has been ranked as the 12th wealthiest city in the world.

Let’s take discover the seven key factors, backed with reliable statistics, that make Dubai a favoured spot for expatriates and entrepreneurs alike.

Issuance of New Business Licenses

In 2021 alone, Dubai issued 72,152 new business licenses, reveals data from the Business Registration and Licensing (BRL) sector at the Department of Economy and Tourism (DET), a 69% sweeping leap from 2020. Thus, fortifying the Golden City’s repute of being the Mecca for entrepreneurs and expatriates. Some of the most notable factors that have propelled Dubai into its magnanimous success as the incubating cradle for thriving businesses are as follows –

Factor 1: Geographical Location

Positioned strategically in the triangular center of three continents – Asia, Africa, and Europe – Dubai sits at the lucrative crossroads of the East and the West making it a beaming commercial trade route.

Dubai triumphs on all fronts, not just air and land! Two-thirds of the world’s population from most major destinations can reach Dubai within eight hours of flight time. With the consistent growth of the two airports in Dubai, it has emerged as the busiest air transport hub in the world. Thereby, facilitating rapid global delivery and re-export activities. Meanwhile, accelerating its aviation industry exponentially; weaving a lesson for the Globe to learn from.

Factor 2: Diverse Industries

Contrary to stereotypic beliefs, Dubai boasts of a highly-diverse economy that profits from varied industries apart from hydro-carbons. The IT industry in Dubai has been thriving over the years. With industry leaders in the realm of crypto setting up their offices in Dubai, the city has unofficially established itself as the oasis of the crypto industry in the Middle East.

The Dubai Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA) is also under the making which will oversee the regulation, governance, and licensing of cryptocurrencies, NFTs, and other virtual assets. This has further skewed the preference of the Crypto communities towards Dubai as their business ground.

Factor 3: Ownership & Taxation

Previously, the Commercial Companies Law (CCL) mandated a maximum of 49% share capital held in an entity should be by a foreign investor. The remnant 51% must be held by a UAE national or company completely owned by UAE nationals. The Decree-Law No. 26 of 2020 now allows foreign investors with specific business activity to be up to 100% shareholders of a locally incorporated business.

Dubai boasts of levying the lowest corporate tax, after Bahrain, at only 9%, for businesses churning above AED 375,000 in profits outside free zones (economic areas where duties aren’t levied). Thus, exempting start-ups and SMEs from the tax load. Businesses that involve the extraction of natural resources are also exempted from taxes. Personal income taxes have never been implemented in Dubai and is not expected to exist in the distant future.

Factor 4: Visa Regulation

Investors with investments in the public domain above the worth of AED 10,000,000 and those with specialized talents can enjoy the privilege of 10 years Investor Visa. Real estate investors with investments worth AED 5,000,000, foreign entrepreneurs with a business worth a minimum of AED 500,000, and outstanding students are eligible for a 5-years residence visa.

Factor 5: The Hub of Financers

A 2020 study by New World Wealth suggests that there has been a 3.8% increase in the number of HNWIs pushing the number to about 54,000. Making Dubai the 29th most popular city for ultra-wealthy residents in the world. Dubai is also home to some of the world’s biggest banks and venture capital firms. Thus, making it the hot spot for SMEs and start-ups to get financed.

Factor 6: A Haven of Human Resource

The richest pool of talent with an estimated 300,000 people available in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region alone, with many more from the neighbouring Asian & European countries. With a workforce hailing from all across the globe, Dubai truly boasts of a diverse workforce that gives employers access to a wider range of talent pools. Still, some of the most common challenges faced by employers when it comes to staffing and HR activities are:

  • Keeping up with the ebbs and flows of the business by meeting the under-staffed gaps with efficient contractual staffing.
  • Finding seasoned, skilled talent from the relevant industry.
  • Staying compliant with staffing laws and regulations of Dubai.

Factor 7: Social Life

When it comes to leisure work-life balance, Dubai doesn’t disappoint with architectural wonders, museums, beaches, and play zones aplenty. Dubai is also the home to the world’s best restaurants, owned by Michelin Star Chefs, that bring global cuisine to one’s plate. The Dubai Council recently announced several decisions to advance sustainable development and accelerate efforts to provide a better life for citizens, residents, and visitors. Dubai is aimed to be transformed into the world’s best city to live, work, and invest in. With strict laws and a well-respected police force, Dubai is also one of the safest cities in the world.

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If you are a budding entrepreneur aiming to catapult the success of a start-up idea or a multinational giant seeking logarithmic growth? Contact TASC Corporate Services, we will be a strategic business partner in setting up your business in the UAE with minimum effort, and full legal compliances, and thereafter continue to be your trusted partner in running your business successfully. Right from visa transactions, trade-license transactions, mainland company setup, free-zone company setup, and several other value-added services, TASC will be a single-window format that simply serves peace of mind to our clients.