Nationality of partners is a key factor in determining the type of business a person can set up on the mainland. Only UAE nationals can set up the following types of companies:

  • Joint liability companies (partners must be UAE nationals)
  • Simple commandite companies
  • An industrial or commercial type sole proprietorship
  • License for home-based businesses
  • SME license (in Dubai).

Non-UAE nationals (except nationals of GCC countries) can conduct other types of businesses. But the law mandates that they need to involve a UAE national as a sponsor. The UAE national will serve as someone who will be:

  • A partner with at least 51 per cent ownership of the business or
  • A local service agent (LSA), with the investor having a 100 per cent ownership of the business.

Bizvest can help foreign nationals by providing trusted UAE nationals who can serve as a partner or a local service agent.

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