Level 36, Burj Al Salam Tower, Trade Center First, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai, UAE.

Close this search box.

Trade License in Dubai – A Complete Guide

trade license in Dubai
Table of Contents

One of the very first steps when launching your business in the most strategic UAE city is to apply for your trade license in Dubai. Investors looking to operate their businesses in Dubai have an amazing opportunity to choose from a list of multiple licenses available to them.

However, you have to apply for a trade license, an industrial license, or a professional service, it all depends on the activities and the nature of the business you are planning to start. A reliable business setup consultancy can help you get the license according to the type of your business easily, promptly and seamlessly.

What is a Trade License in Dubai?

If you want to open your business, you will need to get a trade license in Dubai from the concerned authority. A trade license acts as an approval to start a business and carry out activities and processes without any barriers across Dubai. Investors need to pay attention to the requirements of the state’s corporate rules, regulations and laws which are essential to have a company up and running. A business license reflects the operations the company will carry out.

Types of Trade License in Dubai

Obtaining a trading license in Dubai is perhaps the most essential part of setting up a company. A commercial license in Dubai – which is also called a trade license, designates most of the business processes that can be carried out in Dubai and across the UAE. Therefore, you must apply for the right type of license which you can get from the Department of Economic Development (DED) in Dubai. Here are a few important and most common types of licenses that might need to acquire in Dubai.

1. General Trade License

A general trade license enables businesses to carry out all of their trading activities under one license. Despite the type and size of your startup, you can conduct your business under a trade license across Dubai.

2. Instant License

If a startup intends to carry out professional or commercial business activities, they have to obtain an instant trade license which can be acquired instantly, easily and seamlessly.

3. DED Trade License

The DED trade license is also known as the eTrader license which enables businesses in Dubai to practice business operations – most significantly through various social media networks. Moreover, it is the license which can be registered under the name of a single owner only.

  1. LLC

The Dubai Trade License, registered for a personal company (LLC) can be owned by a single individual. A Limited liability company can be established by a minimum of 2 and a maximum of 50 shareholders. However, their liability will be limited to their shares in the business capital.

  1. Sole Establishment

As the term implies, a single person reserves all the rights to own and operate this type of business. When you establish a sole business, you have 100% business ownership and all the management and control are given to you to keep the profits. To start your sole business, you have to obtain a sole proprietorship professional license.

3. Civil Company

Civil companies particularly are for doctors, accountants, lawyers and engineers who want to enter into a business partnership. Individuals are permitted to carry out professional business activities however non GCC owners will require a local agent in order to register their civil company trade license.

Cost of Trade License in Dubai

Depending on your business activities, type of business, and jurisdiction, the cost of a trade license in Dubai varies. However, generally, the cost can range from AED 15,000 to AED 50,000. It is essential to get in touch with a reliable business setup advisory who can help you streamline the entire process making it simple, seamless and affordable.

Government FeesFees in AED
Initial Approval Fees120
Trade Name Fees620
Tasheel Preapproval Fees350
Tasheel Memorandum of Associate345
Trade License Cost11960
Foreign Trade Fees2000
Corporate PRO Services Fees6000
Total Cost of Trade License21 395

To know more about exactly how much is a trade license cost in Dubai contact Avyanco business consultant and will be happy to assist you.

Benefits of Trade License 

Due to its strategic location, corporate-friendly policies and elite infrastructure, Dubai has always been a hub for international trade and commerce. This economic boom resulted in a rapid rise in trade activities attracting more and more investors across the globe to come forward and step into the Dubai economy with their emerging business establishment ideas. However, there are some rules and regulations concerning business setup in Dubai that everyone must follow for a smooth business process including a business trade license.

Here are a few ultimate advantages of acquiring a commercial license in Dubai.

  1. Local and International Trade

Traders after obtaining a trade license in Dubai have an option to manufacture or import all the goods stated in the trading license. They have both options: either they can sell these items in the local market or export manufactured products in whatever the country they choose.

  1. Tax-Free Benefits

Numerous products that come under a trading license in Dubai are more or less tax-free which makes it possible for businesses to manufacture these goods at minimum costs and enjoy maximum sales and profits.

  1. A large number of products

The amazing thing about Dubai is that – except for a few ones, businesses can manufacture and trade almost every type of good and product. Thus, trading a wide range of products will help you generate a lot of revenue.

4. Simple, easy and smooth process

Getting a commercial license in Dubai is an easy, simple and smooth process. However, if you don’t know much about Dubai and its corporate requirements and laws, it is highly suggested to get in touch with a business setup consultancy that can help you understand and learn the entire process or do the job on your behalf of you. You will not only get your trade license easily and quickly but business advisory would help you throughout the entire process as well as give you wise advice on how to continue running your business in Dubai.

Trade License Time Limit

Once you have streamlined all of your essential business setup processes, now is the time to acquire a business trade license. The trade license time limit is one or two years; after that, it is necessary to get the trade license renewal done with immediate effect.

In order to obtain a trade license, you are required to provide a few essential documents – which will be submitted to the Trade License and Commercial Registration Department, including:

  • An application is filled out and signed by the company’s legal owner.
  • The company’s legal documents
  • The DED’s letter with the approval of the company name.
  • The DED’s letter attesting the approval for establishing the business.
  • Tenancy agreement.
  • Details of shareholders (copies after their passports).

Requirements to Get a License in Dubai

To acquire any of the trade licenses in Dubai including instant, DED, or general trade licenses, every investor must meet the requirements – as mentioned below.

  1. General Trade License

To obtain a general trade license, investors need to meet the requirements:

  • Business plan.
  • License Application.
  • Fees payment receipt.
  • Name Approval letter from DED.
  • Memorandum of Association (MOA).
  • Passport copy of the investor or the shareholders (if any).

In addition, they also need to get the approval of other government agencies as well (if required). Nevertheless, in case the service is provided through the service centres of Dubai Economy, investors can submit essential documents through the email of the centre.

  1. Instant License

Unified number or ID number

  1. DED Trader License

ID number

Steps to Get a Trade License in Dubai

Investors must meet certain requirements in order to get their trade license in Dubai. They have to provide all the legal and other essential documents to the concerned authority DED and comply with all other requirements as well.

Although the process of obtaining a trade license is easy, however, it can be challenging if you don’t know the legal requirements set by the government for the corporate culture. To avoid complications, legal issues, and penalties due to any issue, it is important to get help from a credible and trusted business setup advisory like Avyanco.

How Avyanco Helps You 

Business setup becomes easy than ever before if you consult with the right business setup agency like Avyanco. Team Avyanco is the leading business advisory strives to help investors establish their businesses with ease. Our experts will not only help you obtain your trade license but will remain with you throughout the entire process – from initial consultation to managing and submitting legal documents to enter into your company successfully.

If you still have any queries, feel free to get in touch with us and let us help you meet your goals.


  1. What is the minimum time for getting a trade license in Dubai?

Normal License: 10 minutes/normal

Instant license: five minutes

DED trader license: five minutes

  1. What are other Services Under Trade License?
  • Reserve Trade Name
  • Request to renew commercial license
  • Request to issue trade permit
  1. Can I Amend my Trade Ticense?

YES: Trade license amendment in Dubai etc.

  1. What are the Types of Business Licenses?
  • Commercial
  • Professional
  • Tourism
  • Industrial
  1. What is the Time Limit of a Trade License?
  • One year
  • Two years
  1. What is the difference between Dubai Mainland and Freezone trade license?

The major difference between a free zone and mainland is that a mainland firm can freely operate its business operations throughout UAE. Whereas, a free zone company need to get a local agent in order to conduct its business activities in non-free zone locations.


About the Author


Jashvantkumar Prajapati

(Founder and CEO of Avyanco Group of Companies; Business Setup Consultancy, Avyanco Tax and Accounting LLC, and Avyanco Auditing LLC.)

He keeps a varied portfolio with core expertise in investment management, corporate structuring, commercial law, business consultancy, lead management, business planning and market research. Aspire to help potential entrepreneurs and investors to come ahead and form their companies in highly emerging economies like UAE.