Doing business guide UAE

Understanding the United Arab Emirates’ tax position

Occupying a strategic location between Asia, Europe and Africa, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) ranks first among the countries most attractive to foreign direct investment in the Middle East (ME) and Africa region. If you are a new reader of the Deloitte Middle East Doing Business guides series, you will find this document a useful companion and supportive guide throughout your journey in the UAE business terrain. 

If you have followed our reports for a while now, you will appreciate the updates, highlighting the most important changes, presented in the familiar format.

This Taxation and investment guide is a first stop for investors wishing to gain a working perspective on the operating conditions and investment climate. The areas covered in this guide are listed below:  

  • About the United Arab Emirates
  • Legal and regulatory framework
    • Entering the market
    • Mainland and Free Zone establishments
    • High-level entity set-up comparison in mainland vs. Free Zones
    • Offshore establishments and formation procedures and registration
  • Taxation in the United Arab Emirates
    • Introduction of Corporate income tax
    • Taxation of oil and gas companies
    • Taxation of branches of foreign banks
    • Withholding taxes
    • Capital gains and tax incentives
    • Transfer Pricing and country-by-country reporting
    • Stamp duty
    • Real estate transfer fees and municipal charges
    • Economic substance rules
    • Value Added Tax
    • Excise Tax
    • Customs duty
    • Personal Taxation
  • Immigration and labor landscape
    • Work authorization
    • Exit requirements/de-registrations
    • Processing challenges for work permits
    • Inter-emirate assignments and employer compliance
    • Emiratization
    • Business visitors
    • Virtual work program and labor laws
  • United Arab Emirates double tax treaty network


We welcome the opportunity to discuss your specific needs and provide you with a better understanding of the issues discussed in this material. 
Please do not hesitate to contact us on the following email ID: Alternatively, you can contact one of our Tax leaders listed on the last page of the guide.

Doing business guide UAE
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