FZE versus FZ-LLC

FZ vs FZ LLC Dubai

FZE versus FZ-LLC

Dubai with its tremendous growth and development has emerged as a great destination for business start-ups from around the world. At present, there are over 22 Free Zones in the UAE, which are home to around 10,000 companies. Dubai has the largest number and has been a forerunner of sorts in this regard.

You can register a new company as a Free Zone Establishment (FZE) or a Free Zone Company (FZC, FZCO, or FZ-LLC). Free Zone companies are generally limited liability companies (LLCs).

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While a Free Zone company is an independent legal entity with individual shareholder(s), corporate shareholders, or a mixture of both, an LLC is a business entity that is neither a sole proprietorship/partnership nor a true corporation, but a structure that combines some of the best aspects of both, with the limited liability of a corporation.

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Key Difference

Has a single shareholder (either an individual person or a company) Generally requires 2 or more shareholders. Maximum of 5 shareholders.


While both offer the same operating benefits, there may also be differences in share capital requirements depending on the Free Zone and the purpose of incorporation. However, as a general rule, the paid-up capital amount ranges between AED 50,000 to AED 300,000.

Why Register a Company Within a Free Zone?

  • 100% expat ownership
  • No currency restrictions
  • 100% repatriation of capital and profits
  • No corporate, personal, or capital gains tax
  • World-class and state-of-the-art purpose-built infrastructure
  • No foreign exchange controls
  • Companies can operate 24 hours, security around the clock
  • Availability of human labor
  • Availability of residency visas for 3 years (renewable)

An LLC Which is Not a Free Zone LLC

Only 49% of company shares can be owned by a non-resident. Additionally, in order to set up an LLC, foreigners must appoint a local sponsor/partner who is entitled the 51% of the company shares. 100% ownership by foreigners
Can only conduct business activities inside the free zone area where it is registered as well as within the UAE. Can conduct business across the UAE and internationally.
Supports commercial, professional, and industrial licenses Supports commercial, professional, and industrial licenses


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