Offshore & Mainland Companies in Dubai


You need to be acquainted with the terms “Mainland,” “Freezone,” and “Offshore” when starting a company in Dubai, UAE. In all three jurisdictions, there are advantages and disadvantages, and relevant opportunities for business owners with specific goals.

Offshore Companies Dubai, UAE

Offshore firms are ideal for companies that target markets outside of the UAE.

With the help of an offshore business licence you can have a trading or consultancy business outside of the UAE and which will also enable you to make banking transactions.

A further advantage of an offshore license is that even with a virtual presence the business owner can purchase properties in the country under the company’s name.

Buying real estate as a foreigner:

You are free to own property in Dubai as a foreigner in specific designated locations. Such properties are identified as freehold properties.

You can prefer to buy them personally or by using a company license. There are, consequently, predefined factors which must be fulfilled.

In Dubai, you can purchase property under your offshore company license if it is registered in RAKICC or Jebel Ali Free Zone Area only. Previously, it was restricted to JAFZA Offshore companies to purchase freehold properties in Dubai.

Offshore companies registered under international jurisdictions such as Seychelles, Hong Kong and the British Virgin Islands are not permitted own properties in Dubai.

Advantages of Owning Property Using Company License:

Although owning a property has a range of benefits, having a business license to own the property presents you with other benefits as well:


Using an offshore company license to own a property will ensure to protect your privacy. The property will be held in the name of the corporation, which helps to protect your identity from foreign governments and public records. So protecting your confidentiality.

Tax Savings:

As an owner of a property under an offshore company license, you are 100% exempt from paying tax.

100% Ownership:

When you start an offshore company in the UAE, you can own 100% as a foreign national and do not need a local Emirati partner to be approved for possession of a property.


Owning a property under an offshore company license in the UAE exempts your property from following the sharia law of inheritance.

Mainland Companies

The mainland companies operate in the UAE and are registered with the respective emirate’s Department of Economic Development.

Mainland companies can carry out major business activities in the UAE such as industrial, commercial and professional with their offices, retail outlets and storefronts.

With this license, investors can take advantage of residency visa benefits and recruit staff from around the world.

It is convenient to open a bank account with a mainland license, because the company has a registered address in the UAE.

How convenient it is to establish a company on the mainland as compared to offshore?

It’s simple and convenient to register a mainland company and this has a fast-track alternative.

Some licenses on the mainland may be approved within three working hours. Offshore businesses however need pre-approvals, which mostly take two to three working days.

Offshore licensing can take from three to seven days.

The UAE Business Market

The UAE is the land of possibilities, and a very attractive destination for investors globally. So once the world’s economy has stabilised, all businesses are bound to experience an upword growth.

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