Import and Export Business in Dubai Guide

Guide to Start Import Export Business in Dubai 2024

If you are planning to start an Import or Export business in Dubai, then make sure to read this blog post till the end.

Before starting a business anywhere in the world, you need to first look into the Trade regulations of the country and the market size. In this article, we have provided everything that you need to know to start Import Export Business in Dubai.

What kind of goods can be imported or exported in Dubai?

Dubai is considered as a Major Trade Hub for Businesses due to its strategic location of East & West which facilitates import-export trade between the two regions.

Due to its tremendous growth, Dubai has increased its trade from crude oil and natural gas to non-oil products. However, there are certain rules and regulations to be followed to carry out the trade.

For Export business in Dubai, you can trade Natural Gas, crude oil, metals, aluminum, or copper and Food stuff can be exported. The Major export partners of Dubai are Thailand, India, Iran, Japan & South Korea.

For the Import business, you can import Machinery, Food, chemicals, Transport equipment, Fabrics, Plastic, Precious metals, ceramic, inorganic chemicals, Electronics, Furniture, Footwear, Leather, engines, Dairy products, and also Alcoholic beverages can be imported.

Now let us understand the Customs procedures for Trading in Dubai

Custom Regulations of Dubai

In 2022 numerous businesses are already having import and export licenses in Dubai due to the benefits of Tax exemptions and Freezone rules.

However, to legally trade the goods there are few documents to be submitted to the UAE Customs departments. Here is the list of documents required:

  • Trade License of the Company
  • Commercial Invoice or delivery order of the goods that are associated with trade (on company letterhead, stamp & signature)
  • Import or Export declaration document (permit)
  • Letter of Duty Exemption (From Ministry of Finance)
  • Original Certificate of Health (for a food product)
  • Original certificate of Halal Slaughter (for a food product)
  • Packing list
  • Health Certificate
  • Certificate of Origin
  • Lading Bill

All Imported goods must be declared to UAE Customs and relevant taxes and duties will be applied. The documents mentioned above may vary depending on the type of goods involved in the trade.

Having a clear understanding of the related tariffs and taxes applicable to the goods involved is necessary.

Note: companies trading with countries in EU territory must obtain the EORI Number (Economic Operators Registration and Identification), for this, you can seek advice from consultants for more help.

Since you understood the rules now, let us see How you can set up your Import Export Company in Dubai

1. Register for Trade License:

You need to have a valid license to conduct the Import Export Business. To get your Trade license, you can contact Business consultants like us who can help you in registering for your trade license and get all the processes ready within 2 weeks.

Why VR1 Global LLC? – As an entrepreneur, your main goal is to run the business without much difficulty. For that, you need to understand the corporate structures, rules & other regulations of Dubai, UAE. We guide you in understanding which legal entity is suitable for your business type and help you set up your Business in Freezone or Mainland that best suits your business needs.

Once you got an idea about your Company structure, you can apply for a Trade license in a suitable location.

For registration, you need to submit your proposed

  • company name,
  • activities included
  • investor’s Visa copy and
  • passport-size photo
  • profile or background.

These documents will be sent to DED – Dubai Economic Department for review. After the review, you will be issued with UAE Import-Export license (Commercial License) will be issued

The License cost differs from the free one that you choose.

What to do after getting an Import Export license?

Open Corporate Bank Account

Having a bank account under the name of your Business makes it easy for you to start your Operations.

For opening a Corporate bank account, you need to have a Trade license & Import Export License along with a UAE residence Visa and Passport Copy.

It is always advisable to open a Corporate bank account immediately after getting the trade license for smooth processing.

Can I start trading now?

Apply for Visa

To start trading in Dubai, you need to have a visa.

UAE currently has two types of visas –

  1. transit visa valid for 14 days &
  2. import export visa valid for 30 days

You need to have either of the visas to start your trade. Remember, you are only eligible to trade within the period mentioned on the visa types.

Any other alternative?

Residence Visa application

If you are already a resident of Dubai, then you can go with a 0 visa package for setting up a business in Dubai.

But if you are a non-resident, then it is ideal to apply for a Residence visa (Investor Visa) along with a Trade license.

This Visa process takes around 2-3 weeks and with this visa, you will get Emirates ID & Residence visa in your name valid for 2 years.

Excited to set up your import-export business in Dubai?

As company formation experts, we will help you to identify the right type of location for your activity and guide you to understand the strict government rules and regulations.

Running your own business is challenging most of the time. We will help you in decreasing your Business setup process and provide you with best-in-class solutions for all your business setup and banking needs.

Sounds pleasant?

Contact us at +971508045640 or

write us at to know more about starting your profitable company in Dubai with our expert help.

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