Everything About the Foreign Ownership in UAE

If you’re an investor, a company owner, or even planning to open a business, we have good news for you. Lately, the laws in the UAE have been amended allowing foreigners to fully own their companies and businesses. 

As this is an important topic and you might have some question marks about it, we will make it more clear through this article; just scroll down. 

uae allows 100 ownership

1. What Is the Foreign Ownership Law in the UAE? 

The foreign ownership law is a new one issued lately in the UAE allowing 100% or  ownership of businesses or companies by foreign nationals. 

Before this law, there were some restrictions by the UAE regarding the foreign ownership. 

For example, any expat or non-national investor in order to establish a business on the mainland in the UAE had to find a national partner. As the partner should own 51% of the company shares and the foreign investor or expat would own only 49%.  

That’s why such a law makes you a step closer to opening your own business if you had any concerns before.

2. Who Will Take Advantage of this Law?

The ones who will take advantage of 100 ownership in UAE are foreign investors, entrepreneurs, and businessmen. Besides, if you’re newly thinking about starting your own work, now you can without searching for national partners. 

You can check the various offices for sale in the UAE on Property Finder; If you don’t want to buy, no problem there is also ones for rent on the website 

uae 100 foreign ownership positive list

3. What Is the Significance of the Foregin Ownership in UAE?

There’s a huge significance for the foreign ownership in the UAE. As an expat: 

  • You can finally have your own business without Emirati partners
  • You will have more independence in managing and planning your work 
  • You will no longer have to negotiate and debate with UAE partners to get the 51% share in the capital of the company
  • You can expand your business location out of the freezone areas across the UAE.

Moreover, now after this law if you’re thinking about starting your own business in Dubai, you surely can. Not just that, you have the chance to enjoy a long stay in Dubai after the issue of the long-term visa for investors. 

Check this to know more about the investment visa in Dubai

UAE allows 100 foreign ownership

4. What Is the 100% Foreign Ownership Positive List in the UAE? 

The positive list is one that includes the economic activities across the 13 sectors through which the UAE allows full foreign ownership.

Here is the list of the main sectors that you can start your business in with full ownership:  

  • Education
  • Agriculture
  • Storage and transportation
  • Civil construction
  • Scientific activities
  • Healthcare industry
  • Administration and support
  • Renewable energy
  • IT and communication
  • Space technology
  • Art and entertainment industry
  • Product manufacturing
  • Food and hospitality services.

The UAE offers you 100% foreign ownership in 122 economic activities, which are mentioned in the positive list, in any of the above sectors. This gives you a variety of choices to start a new business. 

5. Can You Amend the Status of Your Company According to Full Ownership Law?

Yes, you can as the new rules of the foreign 100% ownership in the UAE allows you to change your business status according to the new amendments. 

UAE to allow 100 foreign ownership of businesses

6. When Did the Law Come into Effect? 

The UAE allowing 100 ownership of businesses for foreign nationals was expected on the 1st of December, 2020, but it was postponed. 

Hence, the law of 100% foreign ownership of the companies came into effect on the 1st of June, 2021, finally.

7. What Is the Effect of the New Full Foreign Ownership Law on the UAE’s Economy? 

The foreign ownership law in UAE will have a positive effect on its economy as follows:  

  • Attract more investors worldwide 
  • Increase the flow of investments 
  • Strengthen the UAE’s position as an important global economic center
  • Make the country’s atmosphere more encouraging for expats to develop an independent business
  • The UAE will be more expat-friendly, making it a more sought-after location for investment by people around the world. 

This is all the information regarding the foreign ownership in the UAE. Such a step by the government is a promising one; now nothing should stop you from establishing your own business and being the boss.

This Blog is made available for educational purposes only, in addition to providing you with general information and a general understanding of its content, including referenced laws and regulations, and not to provide specific legal advice. The Blog should not be used as a substitute for competent advice from a licensed professional.