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Setting Up Corporate Offices in the DIFC

Setting Up Corporate Offices in the DIFC

Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) is a leading financial hub in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA) region strategically located between the east and the west, for both financial and non-financial, FinTech and Lifestyle businesses.

Set up in 2004, the DIFC provides a secure and efficient platform for businesses and financial institutions and has grown into one of the top 10 onshore financial centers in the world. DIFC provides one of the most flexible and robust licensing and regulatory environments in the region and made a paradigm shift with an independent regulator, DFSA.

DIFC district has come a long way and matured into more than a place to work with retail outlets, cafes and restaurants, art galleries, hotels and residential apartments.

Reasons for Setting up a Corporate Office in DIFC

Being one of the two financial free zones in UAE, DIFC offers 100% foreign ownership as opposed to incorporating a financial services firm in mainland Dubai. It is the strategic location connecting two economies: the MEASA on one side and Europe & America on the other.

DIFC provides a secure and attractive legal structure, not available anywhere else in the region and makes it an ideal destination for corporate offices including other management entities e.g. holding companies, Proprietary investment companies, prescribed companies and single family offices.

Advantages for setting Up a Corporate Office in DIFC


Legal and Regulatory Framework
  • Supports cross border activities
  • Permits 100% foreign ownership
  • Unrestricted capital repatriation
  • Unrestricted foreign employees


Tax Benefits
  • Zero Tax guarantee for 40 years on corporate income and profits
  • Wide network of double tax avoidance treaties with regulators and central banks
  • Zero Tax on employee income


Geographical Location
  • The MEASA fast becoming the centre of global economy
  • Strategically located to leverage emerging market potential
  • Central role in south' south trade mainly between Asia and Africa


Counterparty Confidence
  • Independent regulator
  • Independent, English speaking with common judicial system
  • DFSA's counterparty regulatory framework recognized at par with that of EU
  • Reduces legal and defaulting risks


Tax Benefits
  • High concentration of multinational firms, investment funds, wealth management companies, banks and financial institutions
  • The largest fund domicile
  • Globally reputed regional and international Auditing and Law firms, and availability of all professional services
  • Central to regional deal making

Types of Corporate Offices in DIFC

Both financial and non-financial corporate offices can be set up in the DIFC district.

Financial firms with offices in other world markets can use their DIFC setup to cover the time difference between London and Europe in the West and Mumbai and Shanghai in the East. Following financial services activities can be carried out from the DIFC

  • Fund Management
  • Asset Management
  • Private Banking
  • Investment Advisory Services
  • Investment Banking
  • Brokerage Business

All successful global financial centers promote broad based economic activity and non-financial firms provide goods and services to the financial companies which they require for efficient operations.

Non-financial firms include business consultancy companies, law firms, professional service providers, translation and traveling agencies.

Employees engaged in financial firms also look for attractive lifestyle and personal services such as saloons, tailoring, restaurants, coffee bars, gymnasiums and other retail outlets.


The DIFC is the ideal destination for working and living with numerous advantages. Setting up a company with its corporate office is simple in the DIFC and allows access to an emerging economy of the MEASA region. It also equally favors the service providers to have a presence in the heart of mainland Dubai and service global financial companies worldwide. All entities with corporate offices in the DIFC are not subject to regulations of DFSA and authorized directly by the DIFC Registrar of companies.

DFSA is currently offering a 50% discount on Application Fees till the end of 2020.

For your DIFC corporate startup licence, Just drop your email id and contact number. We will get in touch with you.