Dubai Multi Commodities Centre - DMCC Free zone

Dubai Multi Commodities Centre - DMCC Free zone

Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC freezone) is one of the top recognised freezones in the UAE. DMCC freezone is best known for company formations in Dubai used to establish a commodity marketplace in Dubai.

What is DMCC in Dubai?

Business setup in Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC) free zone has become an increasingly popular free zone jurisdiction in Dubai. DMCC free zone is highly reputable in the UAE and across the globe, having won the ‘Global Free Zone of the Year’ award more than 5 times.

It is most commonly known for its reputation as a leading trade hub for commodities, being the GCC home to many of the world’s leading company and brand names, with a dynamic and plush variety of businesses making up a competitive and world-class business environment.

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Key Features of DMCC free zone

Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC) is a Dubai free trade zone established to promote commodity trade flows. Recognised as one of the most prestigious business districts for commodity trading, including gold, diamonds, and tea, DMCC is equipped with top-tier infrastructure and comprehensive trade-related services.

  • Regulatory Environment: DMCC is governed by its own regulatory authority, the DMCCA, providing a stable and secure framework designed to streamline processes and ensure a seamless business experience.
  • Business Ecosystem: The centre boasts a dynamic network of trade flows and commodity exchanges, such as the Dubai Gold & Commodities Exchange (DGCX), the DMCC Tea Centre, and the DMCC Coffee Centre, which collectively facilitate an efficient trading environment for a diverse range of commodities. Businesses also benefit from integrated services including logistics, insurance, and financial services, all tailored to enhance trading efficiency.
  • Infrastructure: Renowned for its world-class facilities, DMCC includes state-of-the-art office spaces, sophisticated warehousing, and logistics solutions. It also features a variety of retail and dining outlets, luxury residential accommodations, and recreational amenities to support a balanced work-life environment.

DMCC Company Formation Process

The following are the main steps involved in DMCC company setup:

  1. Choose a Business Activity: Identify the primary business activity of your company from over 600 business activities available. This will determine the type of licence you need.
  2. Select a Company Name: Decide on a company name and get it approved by DMCC. The name should not violate public morals or the public order of the UAE and must be followed by the legal form of the company (e.g., FZE or FZCO).
  3. Submit Application: Fill out the application form and submit it along with the required documents, including a business plan, copies of the passport and CV of the company’s directors and shareholders, and proof of address.
  4. Legal Documentation: Prepare your company’s Memorandum and Articles of Association and submit them for approval. These documents must comply with DMCC’s legal requirements.
  5. Office Space: Choose from a variety of office solutions that DMCC offers, ranging from flexi-desks and serviced offices to physical offices in one of the many commercial buildings.
  6. Obtain Pre-Approval, Registration and Licence: Receive a pre-approval notification, after which you can proceed with registration by paying the necessary fees. Once the registration is complete, you will receive your business licence.
  7. Post-Registration: After obtaining your licence, you can proceed with opening a corporate bank account, applying for visas, and beginning your business operations.

Businesses in DMCC free zone can be 100% foreign owned. DMCC offers a range of business licence activities from trading, logistics, financial service, retail (shops, restaurants, and medical clinics) and corporate services to newer industry leading activities such as crypto commodities trading. DMCC business licenses in Dubai can also encompass multiple business activities under one licence.

What entity types are available for business setup in DMCC?

DMCC is home to a diverse range of business activities and company structures, primarily focusing on commodity trading and related services. Available corporate structures include:

  • Free Zone Company (FZCO)
  • Free Zone Establishment (FZE)
  • Branch of a local or foreign company
  • Service provider companies
  • Trading and logistics firms
  • Limited Liability Company (LLC)

Document Requirements for DMCC Business Setup

To establish a company in DMCC, the following documents are typically required:

  • Application form
  • Detailed business plan
  • Passport copies of shareholders and directors
  • Proof of residence
  • Professional CV/Resume of directors
  • Bank reference letters
  • Company’s legal documents (e.g., Memorandum and Articles of Association)

    The documents will need to be Notarised, Legalised and Attested and subsequently can be sent to PPG for MOFA stamp, MOJ stamp and legal translation. PPG can assist with the full foreign document attestation process through our network of third-party agents in those countries.

    Other cost considerations for DMCC Company Formation

    Office Space requirements in DMCC

    DMCC offers a wide range of lease options for clients, such as flexi desks, smart offices, shell & core and fitted out offices in the Free Zone area. Warehouses outside of the Free Zone, i.e. Dubai Investment Park (DIP) can be rented by DMCC companies with Trading Licenses.

    Audited Financial Reports for DMCC Companies

    The company must keep and maintain an audit on an annual basis. This includes the mandatory submission of the company’s annual financial statement on the 1st renewal. We can refer you to several good cost-effective local audit firms that we have worked with in the past if required.

    Medical Insurance

    A requirement for all UAE companies is for employers to obtain medical insurance for all employees.

    Wage Protection System (WPS) introduced for DMCC Companies

    As of February 2023, the Wage Protection System (WPS) has been implemented and applies to all DMCC companies. DMCC company employers have the obligation to register all of its employees with the WPS. WPS is a salary transfer system created by the Central Bank of the UAE (CBUAE) to allow the DMCC free zone to monitor records of DMCC companies employees wage payments. The WPS is designed to ensure the proper and timely payment of staff salaries.

    DMCC has an available list of authorised banks and exchange houses to register all employees for salary transfer. See link to DMCC authorised list here.

    All DMCC companies must register their staff by 31st December 2023 deadline. As of 1st January 2024, if a DMCC company fails to transfer their employee’s salary as per the agreed contract, portal sanctions and fines will apply.

    Obtaining Employment Visas in DMCC Free Zone

    The process to obtain an employment visa in DMCC:

    1. Complete the application form
    2. Submit documents of the employee – passport photo, passport copy, education certificate, offer letter (signed copy), employment contract (signed copy applicable if the employee is already residing in UAE) and current visa (applicable if the employee is already residing in UAE). 
    3. Receive DMCC approval
    4. Entry Permit – permission for employee to enter country (if applying from outside UAE)
    5. Once in country – visa stamping and documents submission
    6. Apply for employee health insurance and complete medical examination and biometrics - attach these documents to your application
    7. EID registration
    8. Confirmation and issuance of residence visa permit

    Benefits and advantages of setting up in DMCC

    • Strategic Location: DMCC offers easy access to global markets, which is critical for trading businesses. Its proximity to the Jebel Ali Port and the Al Maktoum International Airport facilitates smooth logistics and global trade operations. Central business location in Dubai – Jumeirah Lake Towers (JLT).
    • Tax Incentives: Businesses in DMCC enjoy competitive advantages such as 0% corporate and personal tax for a guaranteed 50 years and no restrictions on capital repatriation.
    • Networking Opportunities: With over 15,000 registered companies from various sectors, DMCC provides unparalleled networking opportunities that are vital for expanding business operations. A massive network of companies and businesses with co-working spaces and ‘The Knowledge Series’, an initiative for business to knowledge share and support other likeminded businesses.
    • Comprehensive Support Services: From licensing, visa services, and compliance, DMCC offers all-encompassing support to ensure businesses operate efficiently without administrative burdens. Business incubators and accelerators – DMCC Crypto Centre and DMCC Gaming Centre
    • 100% Ownership: Businesses in DMCC free zone can be 100% foreign owned
    • WPS: DMCC have the Wage Protection System (WPS) in place to safeguard the proper and timely payment of employees. 

    How can PPG assist?

    PRO Partner Group can assist with the full incorporation of a DMCC Free Zone company from obtaining the DMCC trade licence, PRO support matter for DMCC employment visas through to the continued support services including corporate secretarial services, bookkeeping and accounting, payroll and HR services in Dubai. 

    For any enquiries or detailed guidance on setting up in DMCC free zone, please reach out to us. Our team is ready to support you in navigating the setup process and helping you take full advantage of the opportunities available in Dubai’s vibrant trading ecosystem.

    Company Formation in DMCC

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