Dubai – the Business Hub of the Middle East
Dubai stands at the crossroads of the East and the West, both geographically and culturally.
In little over two decades, Dubai has metamorphosed into a business behemoth, rivalling the top cities in the world. From being a dusty old town with a local trading community, today Dubai is an immensely attractive business destination for any company that wants to capture the rapidly expanding markets of the Middle East, Asia and Africa. Dubai is a city that inspires every other city and nation to strive to reach the heady heights which Dubai has scaled.
Dubai’s strategic geographical location makes it the ideal gateway between the East and West opening the door for businesses to target more than 2 billion people. It also is the hub for the region’s import and export industry, one of the most profitable markets the world over.
With the winning combination of increased foreign ownership, relaxed immigration formalities, excellent communication and infrastructural networks, and the relative ease in starting up a business, Dubai provides an ideal climate for operating a successful business.
Now let’s examine some of the key factors that contribute to making Dubai an attractive business destination
1. A vibrant and growing economy
Among the Emirates, Dubai is the most successful in terms of economic growth, and has been exceptionally successful in diversifying away from oil, bouncing back after the recession in 2009. Sectors such as trade, logistics, transportation and tourism account for almost 60 percent of Dubai’s GDP.
2. Visionary Leadership
It is the amazing foresight and vision of Dubai’s leaders that has led to the creation of one of the most successful and modern cities in the world. An obscure dusty trading outpost has been transformed into a major global destination simply because of their belief in the future.
3. Favourable Investment Atmosphere & Governmental Support
Dubai’s Department of Economic Development (DED) is responsible for transforming Dubai’s economic agenda. It works in improving the economy and provides all support needed in creating a favourable investment atmosphere to both local and international investors.
4. The Free Zones
Dubai has more than 20 Free Zones and they accommodate several industrial and business clusters. Here, investors from abroad can have complete ownership of their investments, along with repatriation of profit and capital.
5. A benign tax regime
In Dubai, as in all the other emirates, all companies – be it joint partnerships registered in the mainland or companies formed in the FTZs- all of them enjoy a tax-free haven. This is a great impetus for people looking to invest in Dubai.
6. Strategic Geographic Location
Dubai is strategically located between Asia, Europe and Africa and its proximity to the Asian giants, China and India makes its location advantageous.
7. Legal System
There are continuous and ongoing revisions of existing investment rules, regulations and incentive packages to promote foreign investment. Dubai was the first among the emirates to permit foreign ownership of property and stocks. UAE is also a member of international bodies, treaties and conventions that safeguard intellectual property, including the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), World Trade Organization (WTO), Paris Convention, Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT), WIPO Copyright Treaty, WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty (WPPT) and the Rome Convention.
8. First class Infrastructure
Dubai has the one of the best infrastructural facilities in the world, be it the road networks, telecommunications, ports and airports. With the World Expo 2020 just around the corner, Dubai is investing heavily into infrastructure. In fact, Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has announced plans to construct an underground railway system to connect the different pavilions at the expo site.
9. Ample availability of human resources
Thousands of professionals from across the globe immigrate to Dubai thanks to the liberal labour laws of the land. The UAE government is now increasingly training the local Emirati population to be employed in the burgeoning establishments.
10. Secure and Stable Political & Social Climate
The UAE has had a politically stable atmosphere ever since it was established in 1971, which in turn has led to a viable climate for economic growth. Dubai is known as one of the most tolerant, prosperous, secure and safe societies in the world and is ranked as the top Middle Eastern city in Mercer’s Quality of Life Index.
Operating a business in Dubai can be a lucrative one, but it has its own systems and structures. A fresh-off-the-boat expat might find it a tad difficult in navigating the legal framework to get his company set up. It would be advisable to approach a Dubai-based company formation agency to help you chart your route to growth and profitability.