How to obtain an import/export license in Dubai?

September 15, 2023

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Endless oil reserves and riches, World-class infrastructure, the bright lights and the towering sky-scrapers, World-renowned 7-star hotels, the bustling business districts of Dubai and the vast deserts are a few things of the UAE that it is famous for across the World. However, the one thing that makes its competitors truly envious is its geostrategic location.

Not only is Dubai blessed with a location that gives it easy access to do business with both the established and the emerging markets of the World. But also with two-thirds of the World only an eight-hour flight away. Thus, making it the ideal focal point for business-owners, multinational companies and entrepreneurs for setting up -headquarters- business setup in Dubai to extend their trade and reach to all corners of the globe. This position is only strengthened by extensive air, land and sea links.

Naturally, this prime-positioning and infrastructure make Dubai, including the rest of the UAE a hot spot for import-export business. In the last two years alone, the import-export business in the UAE has almost tripled, in 2017, the UAE exported $308.5 billion worth of goods and the imports of that year exceeded $229.2 billion.

Thus, doing an import-export business in Dubai has become extremely popular, and with the ease provided by the government to entrepreneurs, setting up a business in Dubai has never been easier.

The Import-Export Business in UAE:

Dubai import entails bringing goods and products from around the globe into the UAE while adhering to legal terms of services and licensing of the country.

Whereas, Dubai export is the process of selling abroad the goods, products or services that are locally produced while sticking to the guidelines as mentioned earlier.

Suggested ReadImportance of Dubai in Import-Export Business.

Popular Products Permissible in Import-Export Business in Dubai:

The list of products allowed for import-export business in Dubai are as follows:

  • Crude oil and its products, along with its refined counterparts, are widely exported commodity in the UAE.
  • Gold, Diamond and other types of precious jewel-encrusted encrusted jewellery.
  • Cars, automobiles and various kinds of transport equipment.
  • Cameras, drones, microphone and other kinds of broadcasting and media equipment.

The Procedure of Import-Export License in Dubai:

In an effort to ease the steps involving setting up a business in Dubai, the UAE government has initiated an online declaration, clearance and registration system. This E-service is under the authority of Dubai Customs and is called the Misral 2. This initiative has increased the number of foreign investors seeking to invest in the UAE to profit from opportunities in export and import business in Dubai.

By using this online portal, business-owners and entrepreneurs can register their business online, while the required documentation must be handed over to the Dubai Customs officer by hand.

The Dubai Customs office does a thorough background check of the business owner as well ensures that the products intended for import-export do not fall under the prohibited or forbidden category.

To guarantee that the business activity is following the proper channel, all business owners who wish to start an import-export business should have a valid license.

In the case of import-export business, the license has to be secured separately, i.e. Export license for exporting goods and Import license for importing goods.

Therefore, you should choose your business activity wisely before applying for licenses.

Procedure for Export License:

If a business owner is interested in exporting regionally produced or manufactured goods to a country or among the various free zones spread across the UAE, then they must acquire an Export License.

A few things to follow while applying for an Export License:

  1. Required Documentation:
    The company must have an accredited Export Declaration Certificate from the licensing authority or the Instructions of the Declaration of Goods application (IDG).
  2. The company should have special permission from the regulatory authorities in case of exporting items that fall under the prohibited category.
  3. A sales invoice containing the description of goods, quantity and value of each piece is required from the company.

The Steps:

  1. Submit the documents mentioned above at the Customs Office.
  2. Payment for Declaration registration must be made at the Customs Office.
  3. The office provides customs Declaration Certificate.

You should choose Free Zones to increase your company’s profit and longevity. For Free Zone Company Formation consult our experts at KWSME

Procedure for Import License:

If a business owner is interested in importing various commodities inside the UAE from outside it, then they must have an import license to keep their business activity lawful.

Following are a few things to keep in mind:

  1. Required Documentation:
    Import permit with special grants that allow the importer to import goods that fall under the prohibited category.
  2. An invoice that is describing the total quantity of products and value of the goods imported by the company.
  3. The Chamber of Commerce approves the certificate of Origin stating the source of the goods.
  4. A document detailing the weight, packaging and HS code of all the goods intended for import.

The Steps:

  1. The importer must provide the Bill of Landing.
  2. The shipping agent will give the delivery order three to four days before the arrival of the vessel. The cargo clearance must be completed beforehand.
  3. The Import Declaration form must be provided online with the payments cleared by the importer. After the confirmation of payment, the company will be given a Customs import Declaration Certificate.
  4. The Dubai Customs can check the required documents at any instance.
  5. After getting a green signal from the Customs Department, the company can hire a transport company for the delivery of goods.
  6. However, in case of getting flagged, the vessel may need to undergo an extra inspection by a designated authority and only after receiving clearance from them can it be handed over to the importer.

The import-export license application process can be a daunting and challenging task. And if you are looking to setup a Trading Company then having an import-export license is a must. The best course of action for most business owners is that they should hire a business setup consultant.

We at KWS Middle East with over a decade of experience can help you in setting up a business in Dubai.

Moreover, we provide all the services needed to establish a successful business setup in Dubai.

Contact Us and book your commitment-free consultation call Today!

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