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Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) 

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Dhanguard Business Consultants will help you set up your financial services or allied services business in the DIFC. Because DIFC firms are focused on finance and investment, the concerned authorities must conduct a detailed evaluation of the shareholder profile, company activities, and business strategy.

Our legal and commercial professionals will guide you through the whole company formation process in the DIFC. If you'd like to learn more about the DIFC Company Formation process, contact one of our expert consultants immediately!

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Business Setup in Dubai International Financial Centre 


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About DIFC


The Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) is the city's financial centre. It was formed under UAE Federal Decree No. 35 of 2004, UAE Federal Law No. 8 of 2004, and Dubai Law No. 12 of 2004 as a federal financial free zone. The DIFC has a physical footprint of around 110 acres. The DIFC has its own legal system and courts that are separate from the UAE's, with authority over corporate, commercial, civil, employment, trusts, and securities law.

The DIFC's mission is to create a platform for financial institutions to do business with the region's growing markets. It was founded with the goal of fostering growth, progress, and economic development in the UAE while also facilitating access to regional markets by providing internationally recognised legal and commercial practises, as well as infrastructure that meets international standards.

It is a financial hub ideally placed between the eastern and western time zones, surrounded by a rapidly rising region rich in natural resources and petrodollars. It offers an unrivalled financial destination and powerhouse when combined with a tax-friendly framework and a laissez-faire attitude toward capital repatriation and fund movement.

DIFC's expanding prominence as a global financial centre serving to the area is reaffirmed by the geographic diversity of the Centre's total number of regulated enterprises. Europe accounts for 36% of regulated enterprises, followed by the Middle East (27%), North America (16%), Asia (11%), and the rest of the world (10%).

DIFC has increased not only in size but also in the sophistication and complexity of financial operations it conducts since its inception. Innovative legislative actions that addressed specific sector demands and the region's rising financial services requirements were important growth drivers.

Features of Starting Business in DIFC


  1. The company is entirely owned by foreigners.
  2. For the first 50 years after its creation, there will be no tax on income or profits.
  3. Access to the UAE's extensive network of double taxation agreements.
  4. Capital and profits can be repatriated without limits.
  5. A world-class, independent regulatory agency that collaborates with other financial regulatory authorities from across the world.
  6. International legal system based on English and Welsh common law (the only Common Law jurisdiction in the region).
  7. A completely transparent operating environment that adheres to worldwide best practises and laws and regulatory processes.
  8. An international stock exchange that lists debt and equity instruments on the primary and secondary markets.
  9. A wide range of legal vehicles with capital structuring flexibility can be developed.
  10. A pool of highly qualified specialists based in Dubai and the surrounding region.
  11. Infrastructure for contemporary transportation, communications, and the internet.
  12. Visas, work permits, and other associated procedures are handled by a timely one-stop shop solution.

Types of Licenses Provided in DIFC


Managed License

A financial regulatory system keeps track of business activity related to finance and banking.

Non Managed License

In the DIFC, non-managed licences are those that are not related to finance or banking.

Types of Entities Registered under DIFC

  1. Company Limited by Shares (LTD) - A LTD can raise capital through a public offering of shares and can also issue securities. There must be at least one stakeholder.
  2. Limited Liability Company (LLC) - A LLC is not subject to DFSA regulation and is not permitted to issue securities. A minimum of one person is necessary to form a group.
  3. A Recognised Company (RC) is a DIFC-registered branch of an existing overseas business. Because an RC is not regarded a separate legal entity, it is merely an extension of the foreign-incorporated corporation.
  4. A Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) is a business entity formed by two or more people who are all members of the LLP. Members' responsibilities are limited to the amount of money they put into the LLP.
  5. A general partnership (GP) is created by two or more people, and each member is jointly and severally accountable for the partnership's debts and obligations without limits.
  6. A limited partnership (LP) is a business entity formed by two or more people. It must have at least one general partner with unlimited liability and one limited partner with responsibility limited to the amount contributed to the LP.
  7. Special Purpose Companies (SPVs) must be licenced to operate under the DIFC Authority in accordance with their charter.
  8. It is possible to register a pre-existing LLP, GP, or LP in the DIFC.
  9. The DIFC Authority also allows for the transfer of international enterprises to the DIFC (provided that the foreign company is authorised to do so pursuant to the laws of its jurisdiction of incorporation).
  10. Non-regulated entities are those that are based in the DIFC but are not engaged in the provision of a financial service (as defined in the DFSA Rulebooks) or are exempt from regulation under one or more of the DFSA Rulebooks' exemptions.

Why one should Start a business in DIFC?

100% ownership

Subsidiaries and incorporated entities have 100 percent ownership in DIFC, as well as a world-class regulatory framework that provides for a variety of legal entity structures.

Framework of Common Law

The legal system and courts of the DIFC are based on a Common Law framework that is overseen by an independent and well-respected regulator and adjudicated by a court system that is similarly well-respected.

Capital Repatriation is Unrestricted

Companies based in the DIFC incur no capital or profit flow limitations, and there are no currency exchange regulations in the US-dollar denominated jurisdiction.

Regulatory Environment with Independence

The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA), an independent risk-based regulator, awards licences and oversees financial services conducted through DIFC.

Model of a Hub and Spoke

DIFC provides a platform for organisations to centralise regional and worldwide operations management, as well as its deployment to worldwide branches.

Regulatory bodies operating in DIFC

DIFC Authority

The DIFC Authority, which was founded as a judicial entity established by the Government of Dubai under Law No. 9 of 2004, is the organisation in charge of monitoring the operation and administration of DIFC. Its functions include formulating and directing overall strategy, promoting DIFC, and attracting licensees to operate in the DIFC.

Dubai Financial Services Authority (“DFSA”)

Established under Law No. 9 of 2004 and completely separate from the DIFC Authority and the DIFC Judicial Authority, the DFSA is the integrated regulator responsible for the authorization, licencing, and registration of institutions and individuals wishing to conduct financial and professional services in the DIFC.

DIFC Judicial Authority (“DIFC Courts”)

The DIFC Courts are charged with administering and enforcing DIFC's civil and commercial legislation.

Registrar of Companies (“ROC”)

The ROC is a separate legal entity constituted as a “Corporation Sole” under the Companies Law. The ROC is responsible for advising on, receiving, reviewing, and processing all applications submitted by prospective DIFC registrants in accordance with the Companies Law, the General Partnership Law, the Limited Liability Partnership Law, or the Limited Partnership Law, and the implementing regulations applicable thereto.

Registrar of Securities (“ROS”)

The ROS is in charge of recording and registering security pledged against loans, guarantees, and other financial transactions, and therefore establishing priority.

RORP (Registrar of Real Property)

The RORP safeguards the interests of purchasers, sellers, and lessees.

 DIFC Investments (Company)

DIFC Investments (LLC) is a company based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. In keeping with the growth of the Centre's investment strategy and policies, DIFC Investments maintains and maintains a wide portfolio of investments. It strives to develop strategic alliances to help DIFC achieve its aims and objectives.

Hawkamah Institute of Corporate Governance

Hawkamah Institute of Corporate Governance is an international network of corporate governance practitioners, regulators, and institutions whose principal mission is to create Middle Eastern corporate governance best practises.

Mudara - Institute of Directors (IOD)

Mudara - Institute of Directors (IOD) is a membership organisation in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) area that serves directors, professional leaders, and governance experts.

How will Dhanguard assist you?

Dhanguard will help you establish up a financial services or allied services business in the DIFC. Because DIFC firms are focused on finance and investment, the concerned authorities must conduct a detailed evaluation of the shareholder profile, company activities, and business strategy.

Our legal and commercial professionals will guide you through the whole company formation process in the DIFC. If you'd like to learn more about the DIFC Company Formation process, contact one of our expert consultants right immediately!


Dhanguard provides the business setup and company formation services in Dubai, UAE with the guidance of our professional team of consultants. Faster and hassle-free company setup in Mainland and Freezone in UAE.

Dhanguard provides Freezone business setup services in Dubai,Abudhabi,sharjah,Ras Al Khaimah,Fujairah,Ajman and Umm Al Quwain with the guidance of our professional team of consultants. Faster and hassle-free company setup in Freezone in UAE.

Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) Related FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What are the requirements to open a Company in Dubai International Financial Center?

    Because the DIFC is a Dubai free zone, the 51 percent local partnership requirement does not apply, which is one of the benefits of this free zone. The Dubai International Financial Centre Authority does not require non-financial enterprises to have a minimum share capital. At least one shareholder and two directors are required for a DIFC firm. In order to operate in the Dubai International Financial Centre, the company must also acquire a business licence.

  • How much time does it take to form a company in Dubai International Financial Center?

    It takes around 30 business days to form a company in Dubai international Financial Center.

  • What is unique about Dubai International Financial Center?

    DIFC's peculiarity stems from the fact that it has its own court system and has enacted a financial services code of law. The zone offers a variety of services to investors, including licencing, registration, incorporation, and leasing, to name a few. Investors can manage their firms more efficiently and develop regionally and worldwide in the future.

  • What are the types of activities DIFC focuses on?

    Banking Services (Investment Banking, Corporate Banking, and Private Banking); Capital Markets (Equity, Debt Instruments, Derivatives, and Commodity Trading); Asset Management and Fund Registration; Insurance and Re-insurance; Islamic Finance & Professional Service Providers are some of the areas where the DIFC focuses.

  • Who is the main Regulatory Authority for Company Registration in DIFC?

    The Registrar of Companies is Dubai's primary regulatory body for business formation. This registrar would serve as a centralised authority for completing various forms of company compliance and registration. In most cases, a business registration application in Dubai is submitted to the Registrar of Companies.

  • Why Choose DIFC?

    A company formation in the DIFC is a viable choice for an investor. There are numerous advantages to choosing this area, which include more than just the simplicity of forming a business or complying with regulations. When it comes to foreign ownership of a corporation in the DIFC, there are no restrictions. As a result, the directors and shareholders of a Dubai-based corporation can be entirely foreign-owned.

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