Dubai, a bustling and vibrant city in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), has rapidly transformed itself into a global hub for business, trade, and innovation. With its strategic geographical placement, pro-business government policies, and top-notch infrastructure, it has thrived in creating a welcoming atmosphere for industrial units, thereby attracting foreign entrepreneurs to set up a Manufacturing Business in Dubai.
However, like any other business, starting a manufacturing unit also requires vigilant planning and execution. Therefore, in this blog, we will explore the benefits of starting an industrial business in Dubai and the overall process to achieve a positive outcome.
Reasons to Start a Manufacturing Business in Dubai
Access to global markets
Dubai offers seamless connectivity to global markets across Asia, Europe, and Africa. This facility will benefit manufacturing companies to easily reach their target markets through top-tier seaports, roads, and airports, that connect major cities worldwide.
Dubai government facilitates business growth through various incentives and policies such as low registration costs, favorable regulations, tax exemptions, startup support, incubator programs, etc. These conveniences draw international investors to set up their business units in Dubai.
The manufacturing industry of Dubai is considered the most competitive in the Arab world. It contributes significantly to the country’s GDP and even aims to further increase in the coming years. As its product label symbolizes quality and value, it proves itself as a top runner in the manufacturing industry.
Dubai equips a high standard of transportation, communication, and logistical infrastructure. This enables manufacturing companies to efficiently transport their products to target markets and reach a wider audience. Thus, businesses settled in Dubai can ensure smooth operations through reliable infrastructure facilities.
Dubai accommodates a pool of skilled workers who are capable of operating and managing manufacturing units, be they engineers, technicians, or laborers. Hence, manufacturing companies can source such talents locally as well as internationally to launch their manufacturing operations in Dubai.
Set up a Manufacturing Business in Dubai
If you are planning to set up a venture in the manufacturing sector, then here is a quick guide to walk you through the key considerations to ensure a smooth and successful business setup in Dubai.
Market research and business planning
A comprehensive market research is essential before diving into the process of business formation. Look for your competitors and potential customers, analyze the market demand and existing trends, and explore what could work best for your products. Accordingly, develop a business plan in detail outlining your organizational goals, target market, manufacturing process, financial projections, and marketing strategies.
A well-structured business plan will help you understand the feasibility of your business and consequently, you can use it as a tool to seek investors and financiers.
Choose the right sector
There is a diverse range of manufacturing sectors in Dubai such as food and beverages, textiles, chemicals, electronics, construction materials, and more. So, you can choose the one that aligns with your expertise and market demand. You must also conduct a feasibility study before making a selection in order to assess the potential challenges and opportunities of the chosen sector.
Legal and regulatory requirements
Dubai encourages a business-friendly regulatory environment, and therefore it is crucial to understand the associated legal requirements and regulations. The list includes:
Trade name registration – Pick a unique trade name and register it with the relevant department or authority.
Ownership – Dubai offers various ownership models including mainland companies, free zone establishments, or joint ventures with local partners for foreign investors to start a business. You can determine the one that you want to operate in the region.
Location - Dubai's mainland area and Free Zones are the two main options for a location to start a manufacturing business. You can weigh the pros and cons of each location and accordingly make a decision.
The registration process involves the following steps –
Choose a location – Choose a suitable location that aligns with your manufacturing sector and needs. Secure the necessary permits and approvals from the appropriate officials.
Submit application - Prepare the required documents such as a business plan, trade name registration, and other relevant forms, and submit them to the relevant authority.
Obtain approvals – Obtain mandatory approvals including external approvals from relevant government agencies, such as the DED, Ministry of Economy, and Dubai Municipality.
Register with Customs – Since your sector involves importing and exporting goods and materials, you have to register with Dubai Customs and adhere to their regulations.
Infrastructure and Logistics
Dubai makes up an ideal location for the manufacturing industry due to its world-class infrastructure. Hence, based on their production needs, one can secure a suitable facility or industrial plot, considering the proximity to transportation hubs, availability of skilled labor, and utility services.
A skilled workforce is an asset to any business. For a manufacturing business, one can find diverse and well-trained labors in Dubai. They can hire as per their requirements and make sure to comply with local labor laws regarding contracts, wages, and working conditions.
Raw material procurement
Raw materials are the primary requirement for conducting manufacturing operations. Therefore, you must establish a robust supply chain to source materials globally. Additionally, the strategic location and well-connected transportation networks in Dubai make it relatively easy to bring in raw materials for your business. To ensure a steady supply, you must consider negotiating contracts with the relevant suppliers.
Quality control and standard
The manufacturing sector must maintain the stringent quality of their products and make sure they meet international standards. They also need to familiarize themselves with the regulatory requirements, product specifications, and safety guidelines of Dubai.
Marketing and Distribution
Develop a marketing strategy to promote your products globally. You can benefit from Dubai’s strategic location to reach out to regional and global markets. You can also use trade fairs, exhibitions, and networking events as a platform to showcase your products.
A robust financial management system helps in monitoring cash flow, expenses, and revenue. Set up a business bank account and comply with the banking and taxation policies.
Seek expert advice from UAE Expansion to ensure compliance with local regulations.
Profitable manufacturing sectors in Dubai
Below listed are some of the popular and rewarding sectors in Dubai’s manufacturing industry –
Legal steps to start a manufacturing business in Dubai
Identify the nature of your activity
Determine the company’s legal structure
Register the trade name
Apply for initial approval
Create LSA or MOA
Choose the right location
Apply for additional approvals
Submit required documents
Pay the required fees and collect the license
Plan your business in Dubai with UAE Expansion
UAE Expansion offers the necessary expertise and support you will need to establish and grow your manufacturing business in Dubai. From business licensing to day-to-day operational routine, UAE Expansion will be an active companion. Not only you will be guided to set up your unit in the most rewarding zone in Dubai, but also save your valuable resources during the course.
So, book a free consultancy with their business formation experts and share your requirements.