Dubai is like a wonderland for businesspeople and investors from across the world including Germany. The government has put a lot of effort in the form of business-friendly taxes and policies to ensure businesses operational in Dubai can get the maximum benefit from the markets. It is the best place to either expand or completely shift your company from your current country to the UAE. If you are also willing to move your DE business to Dubai, UAE, this guide is for you. In this guide, we will go through the process, requirements, pros & cons, and other related details that will help you in moving your business from Germany to Dubai. Read on.
Problems of Doing Business in Germany
Although Germany’s market economy is thriving, companies still have to deal with a lot of rules and expensive labor. The language barrier is a problem for some businesses.
In addition to these, the following are some of the significant difficulties in conducting business in Germany that will force you to relocate your firm to Dubai:
When registering a property for a business, you as a business owner must get an extract from the land registry, notarize the transfer agreement, get the municipality to waive their pre-emption rights, and pay a transfer tax. This task will be finished in roughly 52 days, which is a lot of time.
The bureaucratic difficulty for businesses comes from a variety of sources including starting your business. International businesses need to collaborate with local finance specialists to assist them to handle their finances and file their taxes because Germany’s fiscal system is very much complicated. Germany’s Pay As You Earn (PAYE) system is the reason companies deduct the appropriate amount of taxes and social contributions from their employees’ paychecks.
Germany offers a variety of tax incentives, but its tax laws are incredibly complex. To comply with German tax laws, you have to invest a lot of time and energy. Every year, businesses must make nine tax payments, which cost 218 hours of labor on average. In addition, processing social security payments requires a lot of time—on average, 134 hours each year.
German businesses are required to pay a municipal business tax, a business tax, and a surcharge for solidarity. A trade tax, capital gains tax, and dividend tax may also need to be paid. The good news is that taxes in Germany are not unusually expensive, even though they are convoluted, especially when it comes to taxes on corporate income.
Hurdles When Starting a Business
When starting a company in Germany, there are many obstacles to overcome. Starting a company in Germany can be difficult. As mentioned earlier, Germany has complicated bureaucratic requirements. That is why it rates 125 out of 190 economies for “Starting a Business” in the World Bank Doing Business Report for 2020. New companies, for instance, are required to file with the regional tax and trade offices, the regional chamber of commerce, the commercial register, and any pertinent professional or industry associations. Such heavy documentation can make it tiresome to start a business in Germany.
Strong Employment Protections
Employee protection in Germany is among the best in the world. There are strict guidelines regarding firing employees, holiday pay, sick leave, etc., and the minimum wage is comparatively high.
According to German law, all employees must be covered by an employment contract, regardless of whether the position is full-time, part-time, seasonal, temporary, or permanent, in contrast to many other countries (such as the UK where so-called “zero-hours contracts” occur).
The majority of job agreements are carefully written and contain details of holidays, perks, benefits, and other information. German workers are prohibited from working shifts greater than eight hours in one day, for instance. During each four-week period, if a worker asks to work longer, they must be compensated with time off in order to ensure that the average number of hours worked each day does not go over this eight-hour cap.
Different Business Culture
Understanding the cultural nuances and differences of the foreign country in great detail is essential for running a successful business there. This is crucial in a country such as Germany where business etiquette is very distinct from other cultures, is taken very seriously, and reflects the core values of German culture such as efficiency, punctuality, and formality.
Additionally, Germans respect organization, structure, and attention to detail; nothing is done in “half measures,” as in a few other countries. Businesses that don’t anticipate it and just assume that the same lax approach to doing business is standard may find this big difference in business culture to be a major sticking point.
High Cost of Labor
International investors are not drawn to Germany’s high labor costs. Germany’s average hourly wage is 35.6 euros, which is significantly more than the EU’s average wage of 27.7 euros. The present national minimum wage in Germany is 9.35 euros per hour, and by mid-2022, that rate raised to 10.45 euros.
German labor is also expensive to hire because of high payroll taxation. Employers contribute to an accident, accident health, unemployment, and nursing care insurance. In total, employers are required to contribute an extra 20.7% to social security on top of employee wages. Companies should take recruitment expenses into account when hiring in a foreign country, which in Germany averaged 4,700 euros or above eight weeks of pay.
Why Start a Business in Dubai?
Dubai offers extremely friendly and helpful business environments. In fact, Dubai saw the launch of over 20,000 new businesses recently. Unsurprisingly, many of these were filed by businesspeople from other countries. Approximately 80% to 90% of the workforce in the UAE is made up of foreigners.
Thousands of business owners from all over the globe travel to Dubai to launch their startups and businesses for a variety of compelling benefits. Some of the major benefits are as follows:
The UAE has no income tax on either personal or business revenue. The VAT, which was implemented in January 2018 and is currently set at a flat 5%, is the only significant tax to be paid in the Emirates.
The second-largest economy in the Arab world is the United Arab Emirates. It ranks second to Saudi Arabia in terms of revenue, with a GDP of around AED 692 billion. The country is equally diverse as it is large. From healthcare and hospitality to trade and technology, there are many different industries in which you can launch a company.
Great Quality of Life
Despite being slightly behind Spain and Ireland, the UAE placed 23rd, ahead of Portugal and Greece for the high quality of life. So, the place is fine to do business.
Numerous startup incubators and funding initiatives targeting the promotion of business development are found in the Emirates.
Moving a business in Dubai has a very promising future. The UAE is expected to lead economic growth in the Arabian Gulf this year. According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), it is growing by 2.5%. This is far ahead of Saudi Arabia, which is expected to expand its economy by 0.4% and has the largest economy in the region.
How to Move Your DE Business to Dubai, UAE?
If you have decided to take this step, you have done the right thing. Follow the steps given ahead to move your German business to Dubai, UAE right away:
1. Identify Your Business Activity
See what are your business activities and consider their practicality in relation to the UAE market. Be sure to thoroughly study the viability and profitability of the venture before moving your business to Dubai. Identifying the business activities is important as you will need to inform the authorities.
2. Select the Jurisdiction
Your next major choice, once you’ve chosen an industry, is whether to move to the mainland or to a free zone. If you choose to establish your business in an open zone, you will enjoy:
- 100% export and import tax exemption
- 0% personal and corporate tax
- 100% repatriation of profits and capital
- 100% ownership of the company
- Zero currency restrictions
Whereas, if you decide to move a business to the mainland, you are free to conduct direct business with both international and domestic markets. Working with a mainland company that will charge you some amount if you want to conduct business directly with the UAE’s local market. You will need to collaborate with a local partner who will own 51% of the shares in your company unless your line of work falls under the category of professional services.
3. Identify the Company Structure/Legal Form
When founding a business in the UAE, selecting the legal form for your company is crucial. It establishes the framework and tone for handling profits and losses as well as how you should allocate your assets and resources. During the early phases of planning, choose your company’s legal structure. This will assist in giving your business a layout. Without deciding on your company’s legal structure, it is not allowed to apply for your business license. Some of the legal formats or business structures that you can use to register your company in the UAE are as follows:
- Holding company
- Limited liability company (LLC)
- Civil company
- Sole Establishment
- Local company branch
- Foreign company branch
- GCC company branch
- Free zone company branch
4. Get Approval for Your Company Name and Activity
Be sure your company name is suitable legally before committing to it because the UAE has certain strict naming conventions.
Any names that contain objectionable language or make reference to Allah, Him, or other religious, sectarian, or political organizations like the Mafia or FBI are prohibited. The person must be a partner or owner of the business if you decide to name your company after them, and their complete name must be used—no abbreviations or initials are permitted.
5. Apply for Your Trade License
In the United Arab Emirates, trade licenses—also known as business licenses—are of four different types which are:
- Tourism License
- Commercial License
- Industrial License
- Professional License
To move a business to the UAE mainland, you can also apply for any of these trade permits. The license structure in UAE free zones varies and is also based on the type of commercial activity your organization chooses to engage in.
6. Register Your Company
Licensing and company registration are simultaneous procedures. However, there are different stages to the complete documentation and approval process. You must also obtain all necessary government approvals during this phase, as specified by the Department of Economic Development. Additionally, the required documentation varies depending on the business type and activity.
7. Complete the Incorporation Paperwork
Next, you need to deal with the necessary documentation. To register your company activity and trade name, get in touch with the Department of Economic Development of your preferred emirate. After that, submit the necessary paperwork. On the website of the UAE government, under Information and Services, you can discover links to the relevant offices. You will receive your business license once your application has been processed.
You will need to fill out an application for your chosen company name and activity, which you will submit to the appropriate government officials along with copies of shareholders’ passports. A business plan or Non-Objection Certificate (NOC), which is a letter from your present sponsor certifying that you are permitted to open a new company in the UAE, is needed in some free zones.
Mainland companies must fulfill certain capital requirements, which are mentioned in a Memorandum of Association. It’s critical to comprehend the details of a Memorandum of Association (MoA). Therefore, be careful to seek professional guidance before drafting the MoA. The MoA should be written in line with the directives of the UAE government. Prior to forming a business in Dubai, it should also take your business objectives into account.
8. Find a Local Agent (If Required)
Previously, finding a local partner was a requirement for starting a company in Dubai. A UAE citizen alone can act as an Emirati partner or representative. Finding a reliable local agent can be challenging, particularly for a new businessperson seeking to move a company to Dubai. But this must be done to complete the business registration process.
9. Get Your External Approvals
Depending on your business activity, DED may need extra approvals from other governmental or non-governmental organizations. For instance, the municipality, certain banks, embassies, etc. may require certain companies to obtain approvals.
10. Rent an Office
You have the option of renting an office space or selecting a shared workspace at a business center, depending on your business’s particular needs. Also, the number of visas you can request from the Department of Economic Development (DED) depends on your office space.
11. Get the Tenancy Contact & Ejari
You could require an Ejari while starting your own business in Dubai. Ejari is an agreement. You and the real estate company whose office space or shared workspace you wish to rent are bound by this tenancy agreement. The Real Estate Regulatory Agency (RERA) oversees the internet platform Ejari. Also, it makes sure that both parties to the tenancy are treated fairly and openly. To activate your Ejari account, you also need to upload your tenancy contract and a few other papers. Ejari is crucial because you require it to obtain or renew visas for your employees and/or family members.
12. Get the Initial Approval
You must first receive initial approval from DED in order to move your business to Dubai. According to this approval, the UAE government does not oppose you moving a business there. You cannot proceed to the next stages of the application procedure without receiving this approval.
13. Collect Your Trade License
You will have to submit the following to the Department of Economic Development along with the necessary government fees to get your UAE trade license:
- NOC for partners (if any)
- Memorandum of Association (MoA)
- Relevant government forms
- Trade license application
- Trade name reservation certificate
- External approvals (if any)
- Initial approval certificate
- Tenancy contract
- Passport copies of partners
- Ejari registration certificate
- Other requirements by the DED (if any)
14. Open a Bank Account
In order to open your business’s bank account, you will have all the necessary papers after your paperwork has been returned to you. There are numerous banks in the UAE, both domestic and foreign, including;
- Ajman Bank, Noor Bank, Mashreq, Emirates Islamic, and RAKBANK
- Emirates NBD
- Commercial Bank of Dubai
- Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank
Global brands like Barclays, HSBC, and Citibank are also present in Dubai. Depending on your unique needs, you can select the one that is best for you.
How to Open a UAE Business Bank Account?
The process to open a UAE business bank account is not that hard. Just follow what they say and you will have a bank account for your business.
Two to four weeks time is taken the banks to open a bank account in the UAE. The bank will want to know the following things from you:
- Your main suppliers and customers
- Primary business areas
- Total deposits
- Revenue levels
- The expected volume of currency
15. Apply for a Visa
The last step in moving a business to Dubai is to apply for a visa. Several free zones allow you to submit visa applications for staff and dependents in addition to your own visa. The free zone in which you decide to establish the business will determine the precise number of applications you can submit.
You may seek professional guidance if you want to sponsor someone for a visa, such as a spouse, child, maid, or driver, to make sure that you and that person satisfy all entrance requirements or criteria and that it is possible to do so in the free zone you have chosen.
Provided everything is in order, the procedure consists of four straightforward steps:
- Entry permit
- Status adjustment
- Medical fitness test
- Emirates ID registration and visa stamping
As the owner of a mainland corporation, you may apply for as many visas as necessary. But companies operating in free zones are subject to restrictions that differ from one free zone to the next.
FAQs – Frequently Asked Questions
How to Move German Business to Dubai?
To move a German business to Dubai, you need to follow the right process which is given in this guide. Simply follow the steps given in this guide to do so. In case of any confusion, you should seek help from a professional business setup consultant in Dubai like RIZ & MONA CONSULTANCY.
Can a Foreign Company Do Business in Dubai?
Yes, a foreign company can do business in Dubai. But business owners, investors, or entrepreneurs need to follow the right process to set up a business or expand their already established firms in the UAE.
Can I Start a Business in Dubai as a Foreigner?
Yes, you can start a business in Dubai as a foreigner. Around 80% of the residents are foreigners, and many of them own their own enterprises. Also, Dubai openly welcomes foreign investors and entrepreneurs.
Move Your German Business to Dubai, UAE with RIZ & MONA
So, that is all about how to move your German business to Dubai, UAE. There are unlimited problems of doing business in Germany and countless benefits of moving business to the Emirates. Simply follow the steps given in this guide and you will be able to move your business or company to the Emirates without any trouble.
If you can’t do it on your own or have any confusion, you can get in touch with expert business setup consultants like RIZ & MONA CONSULTANCY. We will handle your application, complete the process on your behalf and take care of everything to assure you don’t have to face any issues. Contact us right now to book your slot and start earning good money in the UAE.