How to Start Import-Export Business in UAE

How to Start Import-Export Business in UAE

How to Start Import-Export Business in UAE

Start Import-Export Business in UAE. Dubai is one of the busiest cities in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the business and economic center. Many investors choose to open a business in Dubai because of the best economic conditions and the fact that the city encourages foreign direct investments.  BCM Corporate Services LLC company formation, it is advisable to seek the help of a Start Import-Export Business in UAE specialized professional.

 BCM Corporate Services LLC  should be carefully considered, especially when investing in important business sectors like start Import-Export Business in UAE. Certain businesses will require special permits and licenses as well as approvals from the government ministries. Our BCM Corporate Services LLC  firm in Dubai works with qualified professionals and we can help you set up your new business.

Your Start Import-Export Business in UAE services needs:

If your company starts Import-Export Business in UAE, you should need to register with Dubai Customs. Like many government departments, Dubai Customs now provides e-Services to efficiently manage the import and export of goods.

Start Import-Export Business in UAE
Start Import-Export Business in UAE

Registering with Dubai Customs is straight forward and can be done online, although you will need to present some documents to the customs office. All goods imported and exported from Dubai must pass through the customs office. Dubai Customs a working list of prohibited items for import and export. Dubai Customs has collaborated with DP World and JAFZA to make the web portal Dubai Trade. which provide a one-stop-shop for many start Import-Export Business in UAE.

The trade agreements between the UAE and other countries limit. The tariffs put on goods traded between those countries. The UAE has agreements with so many countries. To find out more about agreements, and effect on your business, contact Dubai Customs directly.


Start Import-Export Business in UAE

Development Services

There are increasing numbers of companies within the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and a growing range of products under Commercial, Electrical, and Consumer goods for export. To ensure smooth Customs clearance, products require certification and inspection to meet the quality and safety requirements for imports for many countries around the world.

How do I obtain an Import Code for the UAE?

First, you have a valid Trade Licence, either in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, the so many UAE or one of the UAE Freezones, which permits you to import and export goods, you will then got to obtain a UAE Import Code. This is an ID issued by UAE authorities by UAE importers in order that the goods imported can clear UAE customs.

In order to obtain this code, you will require for Start Import-Export Business in UAE

  • A valid UAE Company Trade Licence with the activity of ‘Importing’ on it
  • A Passport Copy of the General Manager on the Licence
  • A copy of the Emirates Resident Visa for the General Manager of the companyA copy of the Emirates ID card for the General Manager of the company

How do I import goods into the start of Import-Export Business in UAE?

There are 3 ways during which goods are often imported into the UAE: by air, sea or road. The decision on which option best suits your needs will depend on many factors: available budget, time constraints, storage needs, weight, dimensions, and fragility of the goods should all be considered.

Main Ports and airports in the UAE

The main shipping ports of the UAE are:

Jebel Ali,

Mina Rashid,

Mina Zayed,

Mina Khalid

Khor Fakkan

In addition, there are major airports located in:


Abu Dhabi



These give start Import-Export Business in UAE  easy access to worldwide markets and lots of options in terms of how to move freight around the country and internationally.

How do I ship products into the Start Import-Export Business in UAE?

Importing products into the UAE by Sea Freight

In order to start Import-Export Business in UAE. products into the UAE by sea freight, the exporter should provide the importer with the following four documents:

  • Original bill of lading copies
  • Commercial invoice
  • Packing list
  • Certificate of Origin

The importer should then submit the original bill of lading certificate to the shipping agent who issues a delivery order. The importer should conduct all cargo clearance requirements and Dubai, submit the Import Declaration application for UAE Customs clearance online through Dubai 

Customs duties and other fees can be paid online using the CDR (Customs Duty Credit) account or by credit/debit card. Once this has been done, the importer can print the Customs Import Declaration. UAE Customs will then verify the knowledge provided may inspect the cargo before its release. At this time, the importer can then arrange for a freight forwarding company to take delivery of the cargo at the port.

Importing products into the UAE by Air Freight:-

Importing by air represents a more time-efficient way to bring goods into the UAE. Most air shipments reach their destination in less than 48 hours. Using air freight also lowers the need for physical handling of goods and, therefore reduces the risk of damage to the consignment. However, it can be more expensive and impractical for consignments that are either very heavy and/or have large dimensions. 

In order for goods to be imported into the UAE by air freight, the importer will require the following documents:

  • Original Air Waybill
  • Commercial invoice
  • Packing list
  • Certificate of origin

Certain specific goods such as food and beverages, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, wireless communication equipment, and live animals are subject to further regulations and may require other permits and documentation in addition to the above.

Once goods have cleared customs, with all the required documentation and all payments have been made, the shipment can be forwarded to its final destination.

Importing products into the UAE by Road Haulage

In the UAE 5% vat of all exports are by road. Road haulage is necessary as a means to get goods from a factory to a port or airport even if sea or air freight is the chosen method of transporting goods internationally. It is therefore relevant to all import-export processes.

Road haulage rates are generally lower than both air freight and sea freight costs and transit time can often be shorter, particularly if importing from a neighboring country. Road haulage companies also tend to operate on a door-to-door basis and there is far less documentation required, which streamlines the importation process significantly. To import by road you will need:

  • A customs-authorized bill of entry
  • A commercial invoice
  •  A bill of lading (normally designed by the road hauler)
  •  A 5% customs duty is levied upon entry into the UAE.

What taxes are applicable to imports into the UAE?

UAE Import tax

Import tax is a duty collected when either a private individual or business entity import goods into a country. The rate of import tax levied is usually dependent on the value, or type of goods being imported and the country of origin. In the UAE, the rate of import tax ranges from 0% to 5%, with an average of 4.61%. There are higher rates of tax applied to some products such as alcohol or tobacco.

The UAE import tax applies, only to goods whose value is greater than AED 1,000 and free-trade zones in the UAE are exempt from the tax. Meaning that if the business is operating from one of the free trade zones of the UAE, importing goods for onward sale, there is no import tax levied. Import tax is only levied if the goods are shipped into mainland UAE from the Freezone.

UAE Value-added Tax (VAT)

VAT was introduced in the UAE on 1 January 2018 at a rate of 5%. This applies to the majority of transactions, in goods and services. VAT is imposed by the UAE government on tax registered businesses at each step of the supply chain.

A business must register for VAT if its taxable and imports exceed a threshold of AED 375,000. If a businesses’ taxable supplies and imports is greater than AED 187,500, then it can voluntarily register for VAT and if the value of imports is less than this, then it is not necessary to register.

UAE Excise tax

The excise tax was first introduced in the UAE in 2017. Its aim was to reduce the consumption of unhealthy and harmful products and raise the health awareness of its citizens. Excise tax is only levied on a small number of products that are considered harmful to human health or the environment, such as tobacco, electronic smoking devices, or products with added sugar or sweeteners.

How can BCM Corporate Services LLC help with setting up and import goods into the UAE?

BCM Corporate Services LLC has extensive teams, experience, and knowledge across Dubai, Abu Dhabi, the wider UAE, Oman, and Qatar, providing professional assistance and guidance for international companies, entrepreneurs and investors on the best way to set up to import and sell products into the local market.


Our dedicated operations teams and BCM Corporate Services LLC have strong relationships with local government authorities to ensure that the correct information is provided, and requirements are met in an effective and timely manner. We can assist you in obtaining the correct Trade Licence for your import-export business in the UAE,


as well as to obtain staff and family visas and help you with any documentation pertaining to import perBCM Corporate Services LLC also provide a secure corporate Nominee Local Shareholder and Commercial Agency platform to allow foreign companies and investors to safely establish their businesses in the UAE, Qatar or Oman – 

we ensure that the foreign party has full management control of their products, business, and full transparency with local on the ground support.

If you need assistance and advice on importing goods into the UAE and for further information on any other related company set up, local partner or BCM Corporate Services LLC matter in the UAE and wider Gulf do get in touch with us on 

Contact us for Import-Export Business setup in Dubai :

We at BCM Corporate services LLC, extend our quality services to our client with well experienced & qualified Business consultant with rich expertise in Import-Export Business Setup in Dubai so that client’s requirements of Import-Export Business setup in Dubai. can be completed on time with satisfactory Results outcome. Please feel free to reach us for your Business setup requirements on our email id: or call us on +971502585921

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