Dubai Airport Free Zone (DAFZ)

DAFZ (Dubai Airport Free Zone) is a prestigious Free Zone in Dubai, which is home to over 1,600 companies. You can find an ideal platform to operate your business in the Middle East in DAFZ. The Free Zone stands out by providing a business-friendly environment, tax exemptions, state-of-the-art infrastructure, total business ownership, complete repatriation of capital, etc.

Established in 1996, DAFZ is strategically located near the Dubai International Airport. The rapid clearance and fast processing of paperwork maximize the efficiency of business operating in DAFZ. Various business industries such as aviation, IT & telecommunications, freight & logistics, pharmaceuticals, food & beverage, engineering, cosmetics and jewelry operate in DAFZ.

Dubai Airport Free Zone Authority (DAFZA) regulates the operations including licensing, registration and so on in this Free Zone. DAFZA presents great opportunities to new businesses that are planning to establish their presence in the Middle East market, mainly owing to its location in the UAE. The UAE serves as a bridge connecting the African and the Middle East markets.

Benefits of Setting Up a Business in DAFZ

Setting up a business in DAFZ means joining a fast-growing Free Zone in the UAE. Along with its strategic location, businesses can leverage multifarious benefits such as greater market access, tax exemptions and other world-class facilities. A few of the numerous benefits DAFZ offers are listed below.

100% corporate tax exemption

Adjacent to Dubai International Airport

A wide range of facilities can be found here for all business types: warehouses, single offices, manufacturing units etc.

100% foreign company ownership

Free to repatriate capital and profits

Excellent infrastructure

Dedicated logistics center and extensive cargo handling facilities

Companies can operate around the clock

Direct access to government facilities

Fast and easy access to over 220 countries through 130 airlines’ support

Key Steps in Setting Up a Business in Dubai Airport Free Zone

DAFZA maintains a systematic process of company registration in the Dubai Airport Free Zone. Like in any other Free Zone, the process is simple and easy to understand, which makes it hassle-free for companies to establish themselves in DAFZ. The process of company registration in DAFZ can be summarized in three simple steps.

Select the Business Entity, License and Facility

The first step is to select the Company Type. Company Types Available in DAFZA are,

FZCO Setup

The FZCO Setup is like a Limited Liability Company that can operate within the Free Zone. Shareholders may be individuals, corporate entities or a combination of the two.

Branch Setup

The existing companies can establish a Branch of their parent company in DAFZ without a share capital.

Branch Setup Features:

Should be 100% owned by the parent company

Should have the same business name as the parent company

Should do the same business activities as the parent company

Select the right License type for your company. Types of Licenses Available in DAFZA follows,

If you would like to start a business under DAFZA, you can opt from any of the four business licenses. DAFZA offers dual licensing, which can be claimed as one of the outstanding advantages of DAFZ. The different types of business licenses are:

Trade License

Businesses in DAFZ holding Trade License can conduct activities including but not limited to import, export, re-export, distribute and store specific products.

Service License

Service License is useful for service-oriented businesses and allows a business to provide services specified in the license.

Industrial License

Industrial License is for those who intend to carry out light manufacturing activities, packaging and assembling operations.

General Trading License

A business holding General Trading License in Dubai can import, export, re-export, store and distribute goods. A general trading license allows trading in more than two product categories.

The final step is to select the Facility for your business.

After choosing the company type and license type, you need to select your office space or LIU (Light Industrial Unit) for leasing.

Desks, Offices or Units to Rent

Dubai Airport Free Zone offers an extensive array of premium office spaces and LIU including fitted office spaces, coworking spaces, packages, serviced offices and executive suites to cater to the firms sizing from start-ups to large corporations. These are available for rent on an annual basis. DAFZ offers ready-to-move-in spaces or you can create your own office environment via fit-out services

Submit the Documents

You need to submit the following documents to DAFZA in order to register a business.

Application form

Letter of Intent

Existing company brochure (not applicable for new registration)

Annual financial report or shareholder(s)’ past six months bank statement (not applicable for new registration)

Copy of Manager’s passport and CV

Copy of shareholder(s)’ passport and CV

Bank reference letter (original) for each shareholder

No-Objection letter by the current sponsor for the manager (if applicable)

Initial approval(s) from third-party authorities, in case your business activity requires approvals, for instance, for media, IT, pharmaceutical companies, etc.

*Note:The process may take two to four weeks.

Collect Your Business License

The final step is to sign the lease and register your company.

Signing Lease

The lease agreement will be issued for the Authorized Manager to sign, upon the confirmation of the facility with DAFZA’s Sales Team.


Upon the payment of the fee, you can collect your office keys and start operating.

Dubai Airport Free Zone is a prime destination to set up a business in the UAE and start trading in the markets of Africa, Europe, Asia and all over the world. Prime Global helps in each step of Business Setup in Dubai including, company registration, licensing, choosing the best facility, managing all the banking operations, taxation and VAT registration of your company. Contact one of our expert consultants to get an opinion now!

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