Dubai International Financial Centre is one of the world’s top financial centers and the leading financial hub for the Middle East, Africa and South Asia region.

A vibrant business ecosystem of over 23,000 professionals working across more than 2,000 active registered firms that benefit from an independent regulatory and judicial system, a global financial exchange, inspiring architecture, and enabling support services.

The DIFC district features ultra-modern office space, retail outlets, cafes and restaurants, art galleries, residential apartments, public green areas and hotels.

Operating in the DIFC

An integrated platform with an independent regulatory and legal system and a specialised infrastructure, DIFC acts as a single point of contact for end-to-end client servicing. The streamlined process makes setting up and operating within the Centre both clear and efficient. With a centralised client-servicing model, DIFC is equipped to provide a breadth of services from registration, incorporation, licensing to leasing and employee sponsorship processes, commercial property ownership, query handling, issue resolutions, expansion assistance and client induction.

Areas of Business:

With a diverse client portfolio, DIFC hosts a range of financial and non-financial firms and retailers from across the globe.

The areas of business within the Centre include banking, professional services, global corporations, insurance, wealth management, and access to capital markets.

Types of companies in Dubai International Financial Centre

The DIFC has its own Commercial Code which provides for the following types of structures:

  • companies limited by shares;
  • limited liability companies;
  • branch offices of foreign companies, referred to as recognized companies;
  • partnerships.

Advantages of Setting up a Business in DIFC

1. No tax rate

People who are planning to start a business in Dubai find this as a huge benefit. For a period of 50 years, DIFC gives a guarantee of zero tax on corporate income and profits for all new establishments. This kind of advantage is also enhanced further by the UAE’s double taxation avoidance treaties.

2. Capital repatriation

Since there is no limit on capital repatriation, it promotes growth for global firms because there is flexibility. Additionally, there is no currency exchange control. Also, the organizations in DIFC do not have any restrictions on profit flows.

3. 100% Foreign Ownership

Before, it was a requirement for a company to have a percentage of their shares be under the name of a UAE national; however, with the arrival of the free zones, that certain requirement was removed, allowing businessmen to have 100% ownership.

4. Regulatory environment

DIFC’s regulatory body is called the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) that is tasked to provide international regulatory standards. There are various factors why DIFC is a successful free zone, and one of them is DFSA. UK’s Financial Services Authority (FSA) and the US Federal Reserve recognized the DFSA. It is even a member of the International Organizations of Securities Commissions (IOSCO).

5. Common Law Framework

The DIFC has civil and commercial laws and an independent judicial system. These DIFC company laws govern the place. The DIFC Courts deal with the disputes that arise in DIFC, making sure that fair adjudications are done.