Company formation in RAK Free Trade Zone (FTZ) is one of the most popular options to set up a business in UAE. RAK FTZ is a fairly new economic zone in UAE as it was established in the year 2000 compared to Dubai’s Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA), which was established in 1985 and is the oldest free zone in the country. Dubai is unarguably the UAE’s most major attraction for international investors with more than 20 free trade zones located across the emirate, however, RAK is also making some steady yet encouraging strides towards becoming a preferred choice for global investors to start or expand their business in selected sectors.
RAK free zone business set up is a cost-effective decision that also offers value for money. With an easy process, low registration cost and a variety of options for RAK free zone business set up in a number of major sectors, RAK continues to impress and exhibit immense potential to become a world -class economic platform in the years to come.
RAK Free Trade Zone Authority
Ras Al Khaimah Economic Zone (RAKEZ) was established in 2017 as the governing body of the RAK Free Trade Zone and RAK Investment Authority. The RAKEZ deals with the investors looking to start their business in the RAK Free Trade Zone and ensures that best economic facilities are guaranteed to the prospective investors to achieve their business goals in a highly supportive economic ecosystem. The RAK free zone authority fees are considered to be lower than the fees of authorities in other regions across UAE.
How to Setup a Business in Ras Al Khaimah FTZ?
Before going into the detail of the process and timelines involved in RAK Free Zone Company set up, it is important to first understand the types of RAK free zone licenses and the types of legal entities that can be established in the RAK Free Trade Zone.
There are four types of licenses that can be obtained to do business in the RAK free zone. These license types and their annual fees are listed below:
- Commercial License costs AED 3,650 annually
- Industrial License costs AED 5,000 annually
- Services/Consultancy License costs AED 7,500 annually
- RAK General Trading License costs AED 15,000 annually
The RAK Free Zone Company set up cost also includes the one-time registration fee that is AED 7,000. The annual service fee for an RAK Free Zone Company is AED 1,200.
|RAK freezone license type||Starting prices|
|Commercial License||from AED 30,150 onwards|
|Consultancy / Service license||from AED 34,000 onwards|
|RAK General Trading license||from AED 50,700 onwards|
The investors also get an opportunity to set up a company of their choice from the three available legal entities:
- Free Zone Limited Liability Establishment (FZE)
- Free Zone Limited Liability Company (FZ-LLC)
- Branch of a UAE based Free Zone Company or branch of a company located outside UAE
It must be noted that the basic procedure for starting a free zone company is more or less similar, however, the advanced requirements and procedures vary according to the type of license obtained, nature of business and the type of company selected for RAK free zone business set up.
RAK Free zone Business Setup process and Timeline
RAK free zone business set up is cost-effective and it takes less time to set up a free zone company in RAK than elsewhere in other free zones located across UAE. There are customizable RAK free zone packages available to set up a company, which adds to the comfort and affordability of setting up a company in RAK Free Trade Zone.
Here is the process and timelines involved to set up a free zone business in Ras Al Khaimah FTZ.
Listed below are the documents required for Individuals (non-residents) to set up a free zone company in RAK:
- Valid passport copy
- 4 Passport size photographs
- Proposed company names
The individuals who are also the residents of UAE require following documents to set up an RAK Free Zone Company:
- Emirates ID Copy
- Passport Copy
- Visa Copy
- 8 Passport size photographs
- No Objection Certificate from the Sponsor in UAE
There are some additional requirements for corporate identities seeking approval to set up a free zone company in RAK:
- Constitutional Documents of the Company (MOFA in UAE + legally attested by the UAE embassy of country of origin)
- Board of Resolution
After submitting the initial documents to the RAK Economic Zone Authority, it takes around 8 days for the company incorporation process. Here are the documents required for company incorporation in the RAK Free Trade Zone:
- Application Form
- 4 Passport Size Photographs
- Passport with Entry Stamp
- Passport Copy
- Lease Agreement
- Specimen Signature
After applying for the incorporation of a free zone company, the investors need to apply for the establishment card. The license copy and passport copy of the shareholders with entry stamp must be submitted to authorities to obtain the establishment card. This entire process to obtain the establishment card takes between 7-10 days. However, the duration of the process can vary depending on the nationality of the applicants.
RAK Free Zone Visa
Similar to the process of setting up a free zone company in RAK, the visa acquisition procedure for RAK free zone is also quite simple and stress-free. Investors need to formally apply for the RAK free zone visa and the visa application procedure takes between 7-10 days. The duration of the procedure can, however, vary on the basis of the nationality of the applicants.
Here are the documents required to apply for an RAK free zone visa:
- Application form
- Visa Application form
- Passport copy with entry stamp
- Establishment card copy
- Employee contract (if applying for the employee visa)
- Copy of License
- Photographs (passport size)
The initial approval of the visa is followed by stamping of the visa by authorities. The visa is stamped after a medical exam and applicants also need to submit an application for the Resident Identity Card. The whole process can take between 10 to 15 days.
Benefits of Setting a Free Zone Company in RAK
RAK Free Trade Zone is now home to over 4000 companies from more than 100 countries. The RAK free zone is one of the ideal places in UAE to start or grow any business under the friendly government policies and freedom of doing business in many major sectors.
Here are some of the major benefits of setting up an RAK Free Zone Company:
- An excellent location to establish any business with ease of access to both western and eastern markets
- Proximity to international airport, top-grade infrastructure and sea ports
- 100% ownership of one’s business
- Complete exemption from personal and corporate taxes
- Cost-effective yet luxurious accommodation facilities
- An opportunity to work with 8000 investors from more than 100 countries
- A hassle-free registration process to set up an RAK Free Zone Company
- Easy availability of Land for Lease
Ras Al Khaimah is an ideal place to start or grow any business with tax-free policies and complete ownership of the business in any major sector of your choice. The decision to invest in the RAK Free Trade Zone could prove to be an excellent decision in the long-term for foreign investors.