Incorporate a Limited Company / Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) in the United Arab Emirates (UAE)

A RAK in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is a limited company broadly equivalent to the German GmbH of the French Sàrl, although if setup as an offshore entity it has all of the benefits of an IBC in Belize or the British Virgin Islands.

Your company name may be in any language provided a translation is approved first. The name must contain the suffix ‘Limited’ or ‘Ltd’ and certain words are prohibited, such as names depicting religious values or suggesting the patronage of any government or country. Using our Company Name Check service, approval takes less than a few hours, and once approved, your name may be reserved for up to 10 days.

We then draft the company’s Memorandum of Association, have it notarised by a Public Notary and deposit the required initial capital in a bank to receive a bank certificate. We present all documents to the Trade Register and obtain copies of your Trade License and Commercial Registration Certificates and your new company is incorporated.

The incorporation timescale varies depending on the free zone required but it typically takes just one to two days to incorporate your new company.

Formacompany has over 20 years’ experience forming companies in the UAE and across the world, and our staff will be available to offer advice and support through the entire incorporation process, from initially selecting a suitable company name through to finally commencing taxable activities.

What you need to set up a Limited Company / RAK in the UAE

To begin incorporation of your UAE RAK we will require the following:

  • Your company name
  • The full name, date of birth, address and nationality of all directors
  • The full name and address of all shareholders.

Documents you are required to provide:

  • Proof of identity (passport, national identity card, photographic driving licence).
  • Proof of residential address (gas/electricity bill or credit/debit card bank statement dated within the last three months)

Registered Office

  • All RAKS must have a registered office where documents may be legally served on the company. The registered office must be a physical address in the UAE; a suitable office is included in our Standard Company Formation Package.

Share Capital Requirements

  • There are no minimum share capital requirements.
  • Three is no minimum share par value.
  • Share capital can be expressed in any currency.

Ready Made Companies

The UAE is formed of seven different Emirates each with differing rules regarding shelf companies and for this reason we do not offer ready made companies in the UAE.

What you receive after setting up your new business

  1. Original Certificate of Incorporation
  2. Original share certificates
  3. Original government receipt as evidence of payment of annual company registration and license fees

Advantages of Registering a RAK in the UAE

  1. As there are three different ways to set up a RAK it is certainly flexible enough to suit any of your business needs. A RAK can be set up as an offshore company, a freezone company or an LLC. For each type, directors can be of any nationality and reside anywhere.
  2. A RAK Offshore company offers several outstanding advantages over other offshore companies. Any profits from international trade don’t incur tax within the UAE and directors, there is no need to publish annual accounts and shareholders are not listed in the public register. Whilst the Registrar has to be aware of the identity of the ultimate beneficial owner of a company, this will only ever be released if the courts rule a crime has been committed.
  3. A RAK Free Zone company is a great vehicle for international trade. There is no requirement for a local sponsor and whilst you will have to trade within the UAE through local distributors, it offers visas, offices and a Dubai bank account.
  4. A RAK LLC allows trade within the UAE and internationally and entails all of the benefits of LLCs including risk limitation and a flexible management structure. Members’ liability is limited to the amount of their investment and the company can continue to trade despite the death, resignation or bankruptcy of members.
  5. Nominee shareholders are allowed. For added confidentiality, nominee shareholders are allowed; Formacompany can provide this service if required.

Important Information about Incorporating a RAK in the UAE

  • There is no need to appoint a local, resident director and neither directors nor shareholders need to be physically present in the UAE during incorporation.
  • A RAK with an Offshore setup can not trade within the UAE, only internationally.
  • A RAK with a Free Zone setup can not trade directly do business within the UAE, it must trade through local distributors.
  • An LLC can do retail business within the UAE but it must have a local sponsor who will have a 51% shareholding within your company
  • Incorporating on your behalf can be a lengthy process and so a visit is recommended to simplify and speed up the process.
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