Thanks to over 50 new government-backed investment initiatives, the United Arab Emirates is the ideal location for entrepreneurs. Start-ups looking to launch a company can benefit from extended business visas, incentives for female entrepreneurs, zero per cent corporate tax, and a thriving economy. In addition, Expo 2020 Dubai will ensure that the economy recovers fast after the Covid-19 crisis.

What are the many reasons why the UAE is excellent for start-ups? This article examines five factors making the Emirates perfect for starting a new business.

1. UAE has a growing economy

The Emirates enjoy one of the strongest and fastest-growing economies after the Covid-19 pandemic. Thanks to widespread testing and high vaccination rates, the pandemic didn’t devastate the economy as happened in other countries. A recovery in global travel, tourism, and incentives to attract investors have positively impacted the economy.

According to some reports, the UAE economy is expected to grow by 4.2 per cent in 2022. In addition, the central bank forecasted that real gross domestic product would grow by 3.8 per cent.

A strong economy will attract entrepreneurs to the UAE. In addition, the UAE government approved the largest budget in its history with a total of AED 290 billion (£58.5 billion) in spending earmarked for 2022 to 2026. And the focus is on sustaining a high quality of life. This level of investment makes the UAE attractive to foreign investors and start-ups.

2. Start-ups in UAE can have 100 per cent foreign ownership

Foreign business owners in the UAE can benefit from the new 100 per cent ownership rule. This new law also removes the requirement to have a UAE representative or a UAE national on a joint-stock company’s Board of Directors. The 100 per cent foreign ownership of companies law makes it easier to start a business in the UAE and plan for future investment.

This incentive for start-ups removes the previous requirement that companies have 51 per cent Emirati ownership.

3. New visas for foreign investors

To attract more start-ups to the UAE, changes in visa regulations make it easier for entrepreneurs. For example, depending on the sector, certain business owners and property owners can obtain a 10-year visa.  

There are also incentives to attract more investors by offering retirees extended residency visas. This scheme makes starting a business in the UAE more attractive, especially for ex-pats who plan on retiring there.

4. Incentives for women to start businesses

In June 2021, the Dubai Business Women Council (DBWC) announced measures to attract ambitious businesswomen and more female entrepreneurs to the Emirates. There has already been massive growth in the number of start-ups in the region owned by women. The incentives will help to make businesswomen more competitive and successful in running their companies. This scheme removes most of the challenges that women had when setting a company.

5. Expo 2020 Dubai will benefit start-ups in the UAE

Dubai Expo 2020 started on 1 October 2021, and will bring over 25 million people to the Emirates. The six-month Expo event showcases the benefits of starting up a business in the UAE. However, there is more. The economic impact of Expo 2020 will have a positive effect on the UAE economy for years to come.

The Emirates are an ideal choice to set up a business. The Middle East is experiencing strong growth thanks to the robust economy recovery and level of foreign investment. Additionally, investors can take advantage of the many incentives in the UAE for their start-ups.