Cost of setting up a company in Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, stands as a bustling centre for business and innovation. Positioned strategically with top-notch infrastructure and pro-business government policies, Abu Dhabi creates an optimal setting for entrepreneurs to succeed. 

Initiating a business in Abu Dhabi demands meticulous planning and a solid grasp of local laws and regulations. This blog will tell you more about business setup cost in Abu Dhabi. At Shuraa Business Setup, our dedication lies in assisting businesses of all scales in achieving success in Abu Dhabi. 

Business setup cost in Abu Dhabi is AED 25,000*, although the exact amount can fluctuate based on factors such as business type, structure, and location. Our all-encompassing Special Company Formation Package is designed to offer guidance and support, ensuring you have the necessary resources to establish your venture in this vibrant business hub. 

Benefits of Establishing Your Business in Abu Dhabi

The benefits of setting up a business in Abu Dhabi are as follows:  

1.  Cost-Effective Company Setup

The simplicity of conducting business in Abu Dhabi is a significant draw for entrepreneurs and investors. Companies operating under the Abu Dhabi Mainland License are not obligated to maintain a minimum share capital and are exempt from annual audits, with exceptions in certain jurisdictions. 

2. Expanded Business Opportunities: 

Possessing an Abu Dhabi Mainland License allows you to engage in business activities throughout the UAE, providing access to a broader consumer and customer base across the region. Tapping into a broader market enhances your company’s potential for increased profit and revenue. 

3. Extended License Validity: 

Unlike other business locations, Abu Dhabi offers commercial licenses with a 2-year validity, reducing the costs and effort associated with annual renewals. 

 4. Affordable Office Spaces: 

Selecting an office space is a critical aspect of starting a business, and in Abu Dhabi, you can rent or lease an area at a very affordable price. 

5. Development in the Tourism Sector:

Abu Dhabi is globally recognised as a premier tourist destination, hosting major commercial and sporting events that contribute to the continual growth of its tourism sector. 

6. Government Contract Opportunities:

Companies holding Abu Dhabi Mainland licenses are permitted to engage in government contracts, providing opportunities to bid for various government-funded projects, thereby increasing revenue potential. 

7. Repatriation of Capital and Profits: 

Mainland companies in Abu Dhabi can repatriate 100% of the profits and capital the business generates without any restrictions. Holding an Abu Dhabi Mainland license also grants 100% ownership and exempts businesses from income taxes, with Value Added Tax (VAT) being the sole tax imposed at a rate of 5%. 

Types of Business Formation in Abu Dhabi 

The selection of a business structure depends on your company’s goals and activities. Below is a concise overview of the three primary types of business setup services in Abu Dhabi: 


Mainland companies represent the most prevalent business structure in Abu Dhabi, providing complete ownership rights and the flexibility to operate across the entire UAE. This option is well-suited for businesses aiming to establish a robust local presence and directly engage in commercial activities within the UAE market. 


Free zone companies allow for 100% foreign ownership, tax exemptions, and the repatriation of profits, making them an appealing choice for international businesses seeking a strategic foothold in Abu Dhabi. They are particularly advantageous for companies in specific industries like technology, media, and logistics. 

Abu Dhabi Business Licenses for New Companies

Launching a business venture in Abu Dhabi is essential to acquiring the proper business license tailored to your company’s activities. 

  • Industrial License: This license is mandatory for manufacturing, processing, or production companies. 
  • Commercial License: Trading, import/export companies, or any other commercial activities are required. 
  • Professional License: Essential for companies offering professional services, including consultancy, legal services, accounting, medical services, and engineering. 

In addition to these three categories, several specialised licenses are tailored for businesses operating in specific sectors like healthcare, education, and media. The particular license type necessary for a new company hinge on the nature of its business activities. In certain instances, a company may need to acquire multiple licences. 

Abu Dhabi Company Registration Process

Setting up your business in Abu Dhabi becomes a streamlined journey with Shuraa’s comprehensive support: 

1. Initial Consultation

Our team of consultants thoroughly assesses your business requirements, providing recommendations for the most suitable business structure. 

2. Choose Your Business Structure & Location

Select the optimal business structure and location for your venture based on your needs. 

3. Document Preparation

Shuraa handles all necessary documentation, ensuring strict compliance with local regulations. 

4. License Issuance

Our PRO services facilitate the acquisition of your trade license, ensuring a hassle-free process. 

5. Visa Processing

Shuraa assists you and your employees obtain visas, ensuring a smooth and efficient visa processing experience. 

Establishment Expenses for Free Zone Businesses 

The business setup cost in Abu Dhabi in various free zones vary based on the nature of activities, location, and the number of visas required. The overall business establishment expenses may encompass the following: 

  1. Registration Fee (One-time Payment) 
  2. Name Reservation Fee (One-time Payment) 
  3. Annual License Fee 
  4. Share Capital Requirement 
  5. Annual Rental for Business Locations 
  6. Visa Fee per Person (Each visa is valid for 3 years) 

Cost of Establishing a Business in the Mainland 

The overall business setup cost in Abu Dhabi is influenced by structure, activity, the number of visas, and premises. The breakdown of expenses includes: 

Government and Third-Party Fees

  • Trade License fees 
  • Notary fees 
  • Legal translations 
  • Typing centers 
  • Government department registrations (A combination of one-time and annual fees) 

Incorporation Fees

  • Document submission 
  • Arrangement of approvals and inspections (Incurred once during the setup process) 

Legal Fees

  • One-time payment 

Commercial Premises Fee

  • Annual 

New Company Registration with Immigration and Ministry of Labor

  • One-off, with the renewal of the Establishment card only every three years 

Visa Fee per Person

  •  Lasts for almost 2 years 

Cost of starting a business in Abu Dhabi 

The cost of starting a business in Abu Dhabi is AED 12,500*. The overall range for setting up a company under the Abu Dhabi Mainland license, considering factors such as business intricacies and the number of visa applications, typically falls between AED 15,000* and AED 25,000*. Shuraa Business Setup offers tailored packages designed to fulfill the unique requirements of your business. 

Tailored Business Formation Package for Abu Dhabi 

Our specialised Business Formation Package offers a comprehensive range of services to kickstart your business in Abu Dhabi: 

1. Company Registration and Documentation

We manage all company registration formalities in Abu Dhabi and prepare the required documents. 

2. Visa and Immigration Services

Our team aids in securing visas for both you and your employees. 

3. PRO Services

Benefit from the assistance of a dedicated Public Relations Officer (PRO) to handle government interactions. 

4. Legal Assistance

Rely on our seasoned lawyers for expert legal advice and support. 

5. Translation Services

Avail professional translation services tailored to meet your specific business needs.  

Concluding Thoughts!

Shuraa Business Setup Services in Abu Dhabi is your companion at every stage of forming a business in Abu Dhabi, providing insights into the cost of establishing a company in Abu Dhabi and addressing all aspects related to company setup. For further information, reach out to Shuraa Business Setup today.