Exemption issued to encourage UAE women to go into business and strengthen Abu Dhabi’s business community

The Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED) has announced that Emirati women are now exempted from paying the ‘Mubdiah’ license issuance and renewal fees following a decision made by the General Directorate of the Civil Defense to encourage entrepreneurship among women citizens. In arriving at this decision, the Civil Defense collaborated with ADDED and the Abu Dhabi Businesswomen Council (ADBWC).


The announcement was made as ADDED joined the entire country in celebrating the Emirati Women’s Day 2020 themed ‘Preparing for the next 50 years: Women are the support of the nation.’ The exemption aims to reduce the cost of doing business in Abu Dhabi for Emirati women, giving them the right initiative to embark on projects across vital sectors, especially in the services industry. These businesses will help bolster the emirate’s economic diversification policy.


H.E. Rashed Abdul Karim Al Balooshi, Undersecretary of ADDED, said: “Through the exemption, the Abu Dhabi Government is further strengthening its efforts to create a conducive business environment for both male and female entrepreneurs, particularly for our national talents. This is an opportunity for our women citizens to be an active contributor to Abu Dhabi’s economy.”


“ADDED has always extended its support to Emirati women, ensuring that they have access to opportunities that will help them succeed and excel as well as allow them to take on leadership roles with confidence. This is in line with the vision and directives of the UAE’s wise leadership to  empower women and reinforce their pivotal role in the socio-economic growth of the country,” H.E. Al Balooshi added.


H.E. Al Balooshi explained that ADBWC is responsible for reviewing and evaluating the applications for ‘Mubdiah’ license filed by women entrepreneurs, as well as for granting the preliminary approval.


He further emphasized that ADDED is keen to open more freelance business opportunities in Abu Dhabi to empower all local talents and increase their economic contributions.


Recently, ADDED launched the new ‘Freelancer’ license for UAE nationals to entice them to go into business. The license covers 52 commercial activities and is issued to local freelancers who can conduct business activity even without an official business location or organizational framework. However, its issuance is subject to general provisions applicable to individual organizations operating in Abu Dhabi.


According to H.E. Al Balooshi, ADDED has already issued a total of 1,632 ‘Mubdiah' licenses since 2005, 884 of which were released in Abu Dhabi city; 625 in Al Ain city; and 123 in Al Dhafra region. The license was issued to entrepreneurs involved in 44 economic activities combined.


H.E. Mariam Al Rumaithi, Executive Board Chairperson of ADBWC, commended ADDED for consistently supporting the country’s female citizens and facilitating the procedures and requirements needed to enable them to do business, which will in turn help enhance Abu Dhabi’s economy.


H.E. Al Rumaithi said: “ADBWC is fully committed to providing assistance to our Emirati businesswomen as they go through various challenges. To do this, we are in constant coordination with various entities, particularly ADDED, to ensure that we can build the right environment where they can succeed in their businesses across sectors and where we can achieve increased Emiratization in the private sector.”


The ‘Mubdiah’ license covers numerous business activities that include textile and fabric printing; preparing and selling animal ghee; sewing and tailoring of women’s clothes; interior design; retail sales of coffee; and making and selling bread and its related products. It is also issued to women entrepreneurs involved in making graphic designs and selling the following products: dates, agar, pickles; spices; fabrics and textiles; mattresses and sponge covers; ornaments and non-precious accessories; shoes, bags and leather products; perfumes and cosmetics; and scents, oud and incense. It also covers the selling of photo frames; photos; art works and paintings; snacks, pies and pastries; and sweets, traditional dishes, among others.

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