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United Arab Emirates
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a federation of seven emirates – Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Fujairah, Ras Al-Khaimah, Umm Al-Quwain and Ajman. They all have their own rules and regulations, which means that doing business can sometimes be challenging. That said, it’s an increasingly attractive jurisdiction in which to set up a business. The UAE’s economic performance is predicted to improve in 2018 through firming oil prices, an improvement in global trade, and the expected easing pace of fiscal adjustment. The Free Trade Zones, of which there are now more than 40, are also driving foreign investment by offering 100% foreign ownership.
In TMF Group’s Financial Complexity Index 2018, the UAE is amongst the 20 least complex jurisdictions in the world for accounting and tax compliance. It has this year risen to 74th out of 94 jurisdictions globally for financial complexity, following its inaugural ranking of 92 in 2017. The rise is largely driven by the introduction of the UAE’s first VAT in January 2018.
The UAE is full of potential for businesses looking to set up or expand, but of course, it’s important that you do your research before getting started. Here are 10 key challenges of doing business in the UAE that you’re likely to encounter.
Best business opportunities in UAE
New buildings and structures are being erected in the UAE with each passing day. This opens a huge door of opportunities for engineers and other professionals in the building and construction sector. Similarly, investors can set up businesses that manufacture or sell raw materials used in building and construction.
Oil and gas
This has been the mainstay of the country’s economy for several years. And much of the riches presently enjoyed by the UAE can be attributed to the country’s oil sector. Despite being exploited for years, the oil sector still has enough room to accommodate new investors. Interested entrepreneurs can start their own businesses from scratch or partner with existing businesses.
Because there are many large-scale businesses in the UAE, there is a proportionately huge demand for professionals that offer financial services – such as accountants, bookkeepers, and auditors. If you have a solid background in any of these financial specialties, you will make lots of profit by starting a business that offers financial services to businesses in the UAE.
Foods and snacks
Food businesses thrive everywhere and at all times. And the UAE isn’t an exception to this fact. There’s always a high demand for foods and snacks. So, you can make lots of cash in the UAE by starting a business that sells fast foods and snacks.
Like in other developed countries, the people of UAE are health conscious, and they show great concern for their health. This trend has led to an increase in the demand for professional healthcare service providers and facilities. If you are a healthcare professional looking to start a private business, the UAE is a very good place to establish it in.
Even though there are less security concerns in the UAE than we have in most other developed countries, individuals and businesses aren’t taking chances with their assets. This has led to a rise in demand for security guards as well as security devices.
If you don’t have what it takes to set up a business that renders private security services, you can still make money in the security sector by selling security devices such as alarm systems and surveillance cameras.
There are huge opportunities in the transport sector because of the ever-high demand for transport services. Investors have the option to start a local taxi service or a trans-city transport services company.
Due to the rapid growth palpable in the UAE, various activities such as construction and industrialization are causing huge damage to the environment. And the people are becoming more aware of the benefits of protecting their environment. So, there are huge opportunities in the UAE for green living advocates as well as businesses that offer various environmental protection services such as waste recycling.
Dubai is one of the world’s most preferred vacation destinations. And this explains why there are many five-star hotels in the city. UAE hosts several thousands of visitors every year, and this opens huge opportunities for businesses that cater to tourists in one way or another.
While there are enough players in the UAE’s energy sector, there are opportunities for businesses that help to maintain the various energy generation facilities available in the country. So, if you are looking to invest in the UAE, energy facility maintenance is one option you should consider if you have the required expertise and capital
Best Small Business Opportunities in Dubai
Traders from around the globe usually meet in Dubai to exchange goods and services. The phrase “exports and imports” is very common since the people’s major source of income is from trading. You can actually export or import any marketable products such as dried fruits, textiles, fashion materials and accessories, plastic goods, and vehicles.
Business franchising is a new concept in Dubai. Due to a huge expat population as well as mixed preferences of the people living here, this concept is working really well for some years now. You can get a business franchise in the fast food industry as this is one of the fastest growing industries in Dubai.
Since Dubai is one of the major tourist destinations in the world, a travel agency is a good business to start. Millions of tourists will be going to and from Dubai annually. The total population of the place is also heavily packed with expats from various countries.
Jewelry Making and Retailing
Dubai is known throughout the world as the “Mecca of Gold” and the so-called “Dubai Diamonds” are always sought for. You can setup shop as either as a jewelry maker, bead maker or jewelry merchant.
Specialty Schools – Since Dubai is full of expats of various nationalities, specialty schools are needed. You can think of any kind of granular specialty school and make some money out of it. This is a business opportunity that you can consider now.
Majority of the population in Dubai are working class professionals. Now when both husband and wife are working professionals, they usually turn to a childcare facility to care for their youngsters. You may contemplate on this one, too.
Dubai was once a desert but not anymore. Believe it or not, real estate is one of the biggest industries in the country. Construction firms often race for projects in various segments including housing, industrial, and logistics among other construction project categories.
Bars, Entertainment houses and Night Clubs
Dubai is a country is full of busy people and what do they do when the afternoon bell rings to signal the end of the working day? They spend some time together to have a drink or two to get rid of the stress from the daily grind. You can setup a night life entertainment scene especially for expatriates.
Another hot business opportunity in Dubai are job agencies specifically for skilled laborers. With a fast growing economy, a lot of skilled employees are needed to keep industries in various sectors going. The country is in terrible need of accountants, IT experts, nurses, engineers, and construction personnel among many others.
There are tough laws against pyramid schemes in Dubai. But once you acquire the government approval on your business, the opportunity is unlimited.