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Mainland and Free Zones

Abu Dhabi’s mainland and free zones offer a range of incentives making them attractive business and investment options with different advantages. Here is what you should know before choosing an operating zone.

Operating a business in the mainland

Whether you choose setting up your business in the mainland or one of Abu Dhabi’s free zones, you will enjoy an array of benefits in a business-friendly ecosystem.


As a business operator in the mainland, your primary advantage is the flexibility to conduct business throughout the UAE. Additionally, you also enjoy:

  • Wider Market Access: Access to the local UAE market without restrictions.
  • Low Setup Costs: Abu Dhabi offers low setup costs  
  • Zero Capital Requirement: No minimum capital requirement for most business activities.

Free zones play a key role in Abu Dhabi’s economic diversification. Each zone is tailored to meet needs of a specific sector.

Corporate infrastructures and accommodations are specifically designed to facilitate the establishment, sustainability and growth of companies within each sector.

Free zones provide strategic locations to companies with connectivity to local, regional, and international markets. Free zones also offer comprehensive and streamlined setup and support services including:

  • 100% foreign ownership 
  • Cost-effective operations 
  • 100% repatriation of capital and profits
  • Exemptions on import, export, corporate, and personal taxes
  • Dual licensing options
Page was last updated on: 14 Jun 2024 10:13:01 AM
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