Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza) is a free economic zone located in the Jebel Ali area at the far western end of Dubai, United Arab Emirates, near Abu Dhabi. Created under a Ruler’s Decree, Jafza commenced operations in 1985 with standard size office units and warehouses to provide ready-built facilities to customers. It is one of the fastest growing Free Zones in the MEASA region, which gives you direct access to a market of over 2 billion people.
Today, Jafza is a dynamic base for thousands of businesses, from over 100 countries, sustaining over 144,000 jobs and attracting more than 32% of the UAE’s foreign direct investment; all the while exceeding 50% of Dubai’s total exports, with a phenomenal value for a trade of $87.6 billion.
Types of business setup in JAFZA
The number of shareholders determines the formation type for the companies being established in Jebel Ali Free Zone
- Multiple shareholders– Two to 50 shareholders can set up a Free Zone Company (FZCO) in Jebel Ali Free Zone.
- A single shareholder– Whether an individual or a company, a single shareholder can register a Free Zone Establishment (FZE) in Jafza.
- Branch Company in Jafza
Types of licenses in JAFZA
- Trading License: to carry out trading activities.
- Industrial License: to carry out manufacturing activities.
- Service License: to carry out services activities.
- E-Commerce License: to carry out buying and selling of goods and services over electronic networks via any electronic means.
- National Industrial License: to carry out manufacturing activities where at least 51% of the ownership is of national(s) of an AGCC country.
- Innovation License: to carry out the development of new products and services.
Value Added Tax (VAT):
Value Added Tax (VAT) has been introduced across the UAE on 1 January 2018 at a standard rate of 5%.
Who should register for VAT?
A business whether situated in designated zone or non-designated zone or outside free zone should register for VAT if the taxable supplies and imports exceed the mandatory registration threshold of AED 375,000 within preceding 12 months or it is anticipated that the total value of taxable supplies exceeds AED 375,000 in the next thirty 30 days. Upon registration, a tax registration number (TRN) would be issued to business by the Federal Tax Authority.
What is a designated zone?
A Designated zone is a specified fenced geographical area having security measures and customs controls in place to monitor entry and exit of individuals and the movement of goods to and from the area. Following free zones are declared as designated zones.
a. Free Trade Zone of Khalifa Port
b. Abu Dhabi Airport Free Zone
c. Khalifa Industrial Zone
d. Jebel Ali Free Zone (North-South)
e. Dubai Cars and Automative Zone (DUCAMZ)
f. Dubai Textile City
g. Free Zone Area in Al Quoz
h. Free Zone Area in Al Qusais
i. Dubai Aviation City
j. Dubai Airport Free Zone
k. Hamriyah Free Zone
l. Sharjah Airport International Free Zone
m. Ajman Free Zone
n. Umm Al Quwain Free Trade Zone in Ahmed Bin Rashid Port
o. Umm Al Quwain Free Trade Zone on Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road
p. RAK Free Trade Zone
q. RAK Maritime City Free Zone
r. RAK Airport Free Zone
s. Fujairah Free Zone
t. FOIZ (Fujairah Oil Industry Zone)
What is a non-designated zone?
Any free zone which is not declared as designated zone is a non-designated zone. In other words a non – designated zone is any geographical area within UAE which does not have any security measures and custom controls in place to monitor entry and exit of goods and individuals. Eg. DMCC, Dubai Media city, DIFC and Dubai Internet city.
What transactions are subject to VAT within Designated zones?
a) Goods transferred between designated zones shall not be subject to VAT. However goods supplied by an entity in the designated zone to entities outside the designated zone are subject to 5% VAT.
b) Services provided by an entity to other entities inside the designated zone or outside the designated
zone are subject to 5% VAT.
c) Professional fees for services are subject to VAT @ 5%.
What government/free zone fees (License/Visa/rent) are subject to VAT?
In case of designated zones the trade license fees, visa fees, lease rentals will not be subject to VAT. And in case of non-designated zones the trade license fees and visa fees are not subject to vat however rent is subject to 5% VAT.
If you need additional assistance or have any questions, please contact the following:
Tel: +971 4 343 8022