Company registration in a United Arab Emirates Free Economic Zone Sharjah Media City (SHAMS) – from US$ 2,200

We will be happy to assist you in having a business company registered in Sharjah Media City (SHAMS) Free Economic Zone in the UAE. Not only a new company but also a branch office of an existing company can be registered in this Free Economic Zone (FEZ).

The company can be registered without the constitutor’s personal presence in the UAE but only if the constitutor has visited the country before and can supply a scan of the passport page with a stamped UAE visa. A tourist visit to this country will suffice.

A company registered in the SHAMS Zone is considered a resident UAE company. This entitles the company constitutors to obtaining resident visas for themselves, their families, and the company employees. It also entitles them to a UAE Tax Domicile Certificate.

Регистрация компании в свободной экономической зоне ОАЭ

SHAMS mission

SHAMS FEZ is located in the UAE cultural capital – Sharjah Emirate. SHAMS was launched in January 2017 to become a world-class center for art and media projects in the region.

SHAMS FEZ makes creative entrepreneurship more accessible and ventures to promote business growth in the region.

The SHAMS FEZ community sustains an ecosystem that encourages innovations, an artful lifestyle, unconventional studentship, and joint creative work.

Aimed at becoming a world-class center for art and media projects, SHAMS offers a number of innovational services and grand possibilities that allow business companies to engage in a variety of activities there.

SHAMS mission is to make art business accessible for start-ups, small and medium-sized companies, and especially those that purport to develop their business not only at the local level but at the global one as well.  

SHAMS offers innovative intellectual services and exercises a complex approach serving the Free Zone community.

Main advantages of having a company registered in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

  • Small amounts of the company registration duties and fees. They start at 11,500 dirhams (AED) (which makes US$ 3,140) for a license for one year.
  • A large number of types of business activities accessible with the same license.
  • The company constitutors do not have to be physically present in the UAE for company registration.
  • There are no disinvestment or profit transfer limitations.
  • The company will have limited liability.
  • Foreign citizens can have up to 100% of the company ownership.
  • There is no personal or corporate income tax in the Zone.
  • The company registration procedure is fast and simple there.
  • All the documents required for company registration are processed within, and granted after, only four to five days.
  • Renting a “shared desk” instead of a real office will allow obtaining up to six UAE visas anyway.
  • There is no need to have registered capital for the company.
  • Sharjah and Dubai airports are located nearby.

Advantages of Sharjah Emirate for registering a company in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

Sharjah Emirate is considered the historic, cultural, and heritage center of the UAE. This Emirate joined the UAE federation in 1972. Sharjah has a strategic geographical position: it is located at the point where Europe, Asia, and Africa meet, thus providing access to markets with the population of three billion people.

In 1998 UNESCO granted Sharjah the status of “The cultural capital of the Arab world”.

The Emirate preserves the spirit of its history and involves traditions into every aspect of its modern life.

The United Arab Emirates are known in the world as a trading hub with a large non-oil sector that amounts to almost 70% of the GDP. 45% of this portion is generated from trade in Sharjah.

This Emirate provides for innovative and secure environment for business company registration. Foreign investors enjoy such advantages as absence of personal or corporate income tax and absence of limitations on capital repatriation as well as free profit transfer.

Having a company registered in SHAMS Free Economic Zone of the United Arab Emirates

Registering a limited liability company in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

A limited liability company (LLC) is a corporate structure that represents a separate independent legal entity. The main advantage of an LLC is the fact that all the liabilities that the company may acquire through singing contracts or anyhow else, remain liabilities of the company, not of its shareholders.

An LLC owner is entitled to a UAE visa for him/ herself and members of their family.

Main advantages of having a limited liability company registered in SHAMS:

  • Creation of a separate legal entity that is independent from the shareholders.
  • The right to obtain a license for different types of business activities.
  • The possibility to hire employees and obtain UAE visas for them.
  • The possibility to open a corporate bank account in the UAE.
  • The possibility for the company to own assets.

Registering a branch in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

A branch is an affiliated structure that belongs to an existing parent company. All the incomes, profits, and assets of the branch are incomes, profits, and assets of the parent company. Similarly, all the expenditures, debts, losses, and other liabilities of the branch are expenditures, debts, losses, etc. of the parent company.

Main advantages of having a branch registered in SHAMS:

  • The right to obtain a license for different types of business activities.
  • The possibility to hire employees and obtain UAE visas for them.
  • The possibility to open a corporate bank account in the UAE.
  • The possibility for the branch to own assets.

Types of business licenses that a company registered in SHAMS is entitled to

To conduct business in SHAMS FEZ one has to obtain a permit, or a business license. Several types of such licenses for different types of business activities are available in SHAMS FEZ.

Service license for a company registered in SHAMS

A service license allows providing services as the main type of business activity, and also using materials necessary for providing the services.

A company has to obtain a service license in case it provides services without the use of any materials, and in case the services it provides are central to its business while it also uses some materials in order to create the services. Restaurant service will serve as an example of the latter type of business.

Trade license for a company registered in SHAMS

A trade license allows trading in goods on the SHAMS territory as well as exporting and importing goods. This license permits retail and wholesale of goods, their transference, and it also allows providing services related in some way to sales of goods.

This type of license is required if the company has to obtain a customs code, or it intends to import, export or sell goods.

Manufacture license for a company registered in SHAMS

A manufacture license allows manufacturing, producing, processing, and transforming different goods.

Stock holding license for a company registered in SHAMS

A stock holding license allows owning assets or shares of other companies.

This type of license is required to control another company, or control assets such as real estates, stocks and bonds, trademarks, patents, and so on.

Infrastructure available to the companies registered in SHAMS

Different types of business activities have different office space requirements to the companies registered in SHAMS. To meet these requirements as well as the needs of the company clients different types of offices are on offer in SHAMS.

Among other things, SHAMS offers a “shared desk” type of office. It presupposes a shared working environment that would be ideal for start-ups that require cooperation with other entrepreneurs.

In addition to “shared desk”, “dedicated desks”, “shared offices”, “dedicated offices”, and “artistic blocks” can be found in SHAMS. There is Wi-Fi available in any office type.

“Shared desk” rent with company registration in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

A “shared desk” is a common space shared by entrepreneurs working in adjacent spheres. This option is ideal for many contemporary business people who prefer flexible working spaces that provide for more opportunities. A modern and pragmatic working space creates a pleasant business environment.

“Dedicated desk” rent with company registration in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

A “dedicated desk” is an individual working place located next to working places of other individuals.

“Shared office” rent with company registration in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

A “shared office” will provide for more privacy than a dedicated desk.

“Dedicated office” rent with company registration in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

A “dedicated office” is a lockable room for individual use. The size of dedicated offices varies. Such office may accommodate one working desk or several desks.

“Artistic block” rent with company registration in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

 An “artistic block” is meant to stimulate creative and innovative thinking. The highly ergonomic and efficient constructions provide for a comfortable working environment to companies and professionals wishing to grow and develop.

Artistic blocks include autonomous offices, exhibition halls, office studios, and public spaces.

Opening a bank account with company registration in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

When registering a business company in the UAE, one can also open a corporate bank account in any of the UAE banks.

To have a company registered in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE the constitutor does not have to submit a bank statement for the registered capital.

When opening an account in the UAE banks, you will face no limitations related to the amounts of money nor currencies, which is important for doing international business.   

If you want to open a bank account in the UAE, our experts will gladly assist you in this endeavor!  

The prices for our registration and company support services in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

Service Price
Assistance in having a business company registered in SHAMS FEZ От AED 8,000 (US$ 2,200)
Assistance in having a branch registered in SHAMS FEZ, additional commission fee AED 3,000 (US$ 822)
Assistance in yearly license renewal AED 4,000 (US$ 1,100)
Assistance in making amendments to the constitutive documents AED 5,000 (US$ 1,370)
Assistance in closing the company От AED 10,000 (US$ 2,740)

The prices of the business licenses

  One of the classes of the Commercial trade license, or Service license, or Stock holding license Manufacture license or General trade license
For one year AED 11,500 (US$ 3,140) AED 16,500 (US$ 4,500)
For two years AED 20,700 (US$ 5,650) AED 29,700 (US$ 8,100)
For three years AED 29,325 (US$ 8,000) AED 42,075 (US$ 11,500)
For an additional class (type) of business activities (up to 5 classes per group of activities can be added) AED 2,000 (US$ 545)

 The price of UAE visas

Permit for an additional UAE visa AED 1,600 (US$ 436) for every additional UAE visa
An employment UAE visa (for 3 years) AED 3,080 (US$ 840)
An investor/ partner UAE visa (for 3 years) AED 3,500 (US$ 955)
Change of status AED 950 (US$ 260)
Change of UAE visa (free on the day of renewal) AED 615 (US$ 168)
Visa annulation AED 500 (US$ 137)
A new visa stamp after loss of passport AED 715 (US$ 195)
Employment UAE visa transfer (within SHAMS) AED 2,515 (US$ 686)
Employment/ partner UAE visa transfer (within SHAMS) AED 2,765 (US$ 754)
Reissue of a UAE visa AED 1,500 (US$ 409)
A UAE visa transfer from old passport to new one AED 665 (US$ 182)

 Prices of the services related to immigration to the UAE

Preliminary consent (valid for 30 days) AED 1,500 (US$ 409)
Immigration card (for 3 years) AED 1,500 (US$ 409)

 The prices of the services related to having a company registered in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

Reserving the company name prior to registration (valid for 30 days) AED 500 (US$ 137)
“Shared desk” AED 3,675 (US$ 1,010)
Mailbox AED 1,500 (US$ 409)
Confirmation letters AED 210 (US$ 57.3)
Certification AED 350 (US$ 95.4)
Amendments to the license (free on license renewal day) AED 2,000 (US$ 545)
License annulation AED 2,000 (US$ 545)
Duplicates of company documents AED 525 (US$ 144)
A missing employee report AED 7,450 (US$ 2,030)
Refund of the administrative license fee (possible only if the immigration card application has been declined) AED 2,000 (US$ 545)
Refund of the administrative visa fee (possible only if the visa application has been declined) AED 1,000 (US$ 273)
Company registration for VAT payment purposes AED 1,575 (US$ 430)

The cost of Tax Domicile Certificate in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

For private individuals AED 4,106 (US$ 1,120)
For legal entities AED 12,106 (US$ 3,300)

 The prices of service packages available when having a company registered in SHAMS

Excluding the cost of the immigration card for 3 years (US$ 409) Type of activity Price
Including the rent of a shared desk unless it is the ‘no visa’ option 1 year license 2 year license 3 year license
No visa Trade, Services AED 11,500 (US$ 3,140) AED 20,700 (US$ 5,650) AED 29,325 (US$ 8,000)
Manufacture, General Trade AED 16,500 (US$ 4,500) AED 29,700 (US$ 8,100) AED 42,075 (US$ 11,500)
1 UAE visa Trade, Services AED 16,600 (US$ 4,530) AED 30,900 (US$ 8,420) AED 44,625 (US$ 12,160)
Manufacture, General Trade AED 21,600 (US$ 5,890) AED 39,900 (US$ 10,880) AED 57,375 (US$ 15,640)
2 UAE visas Trade, Services AED 18,200 (US$ 4,96 ) AED 34,100 (US$ 9,300) AED 49,425 (US$ 13,470)
Manufacture, General Trade AED 23,200 (US$ 6,330) AED 43,100 (US$ 11,750) AED 62,175 (US$ 16,950)
3 UAE visas Trade, Services AED 19,800 (US$ 5,400) AED 37,300 US$ (10,170) AED 54,225 (US$ 14,780)
Manufacture, General Trade AED 24,800 (US$ 6,760) AED 46,300 (US$ 12,620) AED 66,975 (US$ 18,250)
4 UAE visas Trade, Services AED 21,400 (US$ 5,840) AED 40,500 (US$ 11,040) AED 59,025 (US$ 16,090)
Manufacture, General Trade AED 26,400 (US$ 7,200) AED 49,500 (US$ 13,490) AED 71,775 (US$ 19,560)
5 UAE visas Trade, Services AED 23,000 (US$ 6,270) AED 43,700 (US$ 11,910) AED 63,825 (US$ 17,400)
Manufacture, General Trade AED 28,000 (US$ 7,630) AED 52,700 (US$ 14,360) AED 76,575 (US$ 20,870)
6 UAE visas Trade, Services AED 24,600 (US$ 6,710) AED 46,900 (US$ 12,780) AED 68,625 (US$ 18,670)
Manufacture, General Trade AED 29,600 (US$ 8,070) AED 55,900 (US$ 15,240) AED 81,375 (US$ 22,180)

Documents required for company registration in SHAMS

  • Application for company registration.

Documents required of CEO’s, managers, and shareholders (private individuals)

  • Legible color copy of the passport pages.
  • Legible color copy of the passport page with the UAE entrance stamp, or a copy of a UAE resident visa, if available.
  • Two passport size photographs for the immigration card.

Documents required of corporate shareholders

  • Certificate of the parent company incorporation.
  • Certificate of Good Standing (if available).
  • A copy of the shareholders’ agreement (or articles of association).
  • A copy of Board resolution to have a company registered in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE.
  • Documents of authorized officials:
    • Legible color copy of the passport pages;
    • Legible color copy of the passport page with the UAE entrance stamp, or a copy of a UAE resident visa, if available.
    • Two passport size photographs for the immigration card application.

Requirements to the passport and its copy

  • The passport has to be valid for seven months minimum after the application date.
  • Copies of all altered pages of the passport also have to be submitted.

Requirements to the photographs

  • Photographs shall be made against a white background.
  • The person’s teeth shall not be visible in the photograph.
  • Shirts of bright colors are unacceptable.
  • Jewelry and eyeglasses are unacceptable either.

The procedure of company registration in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

Day 1

Submission of the required documents and payment of state duties.

Day 2

Postage via e-mail of the Charter, Articles of association (shareholders’ agreement), and rent agreement for authentication.

Day 3

Issue of the constitutive documents: Company registration certificate, Articles of association, Memorandum, business license, rent agreement, shares registry. On receipt of these documents, the new company can start operations.

Day 4

The process of obtaining an Immigration card is initiated.

Day 9

SHAMS administration issues the Immigration card. Applying for UAE visas becomes possible from this moment.

Day 10

Submission of the required documents and payment of state duties for obtaining the visas.

Day 17

Issuance of an UAE employment visa.

If you are outside the UAE at the moment the visa is issued, you will have to enter the country on this new employment visa. Entering the UAE on guest, tourist, or arrival visa is not allowed.  

Day 18

Receipt of the UAE employment visa.

After that, you will have to have your status changed by performing one of the following actions:

  • Entry to, and exit from, the UAE.
  • Having your status changed without leaving the UAE (it takes four days).
  • If you are outside the UAE, you have to enter the country.

Day 22

Your status has been changed. After that, you have to undergo medical examination in one of the prophylactic medicine centers of the Health and Prophylactics Ministry. Then you have to apply to the service center for an Emirates ID.

Day 24

Receipt of the medical examination results and submission of the documents required for a UAE resident visa.

Day 31

SHAMS administration issues a UAE resident visa.

The terms may vary!

The terms indicated above may be shorter or longer. However, all the operations are carried out only on weekdays.

Submission of documents and payment of duties has to be done prior to 1 p.m. Otherwise, the documents will be accepted for processing only on the following day.

Citizens of some countries may have to wait longer until the documents for their immigration cards, as well as working and residence UAE visas are processed. This is due to more stringent security checks. Besides, some additional documents may be required.

Conditions for a UAE visa application

In order to obtain an employment visa the expat has to be older than 18 years of age. To obtain an investor visa – older than 19 years.

If the visa application is called back, no refund for the state duties will be made. To relaunch the visa application process a new application has to be filed and the duties have to be paid again.

The visa application is processed only if all the delay fines have been paid.

The Immigration card original stays with the SHAMS administration. The card holder receives only an electronic copy of it.

The medical center has the right to grant medical aptitude for one year only if they find it appropriate.

SHAMS administration is not responsible for any payments in case the company shareholders or managers flee and hide. In this case, the administration is also entitled to annul all the UAE visas issued to the company employees.

To retain the UAE residency you have to enter the country at least once in every 180 days.

Delay fines are levied before the status change procedure is finished.

The person cannot leave the UAE in the period between the status change process completion and a UAE resident visa receipt.

If you are leaving the UAE in order to have your status changed, it is recommended to contact the airlines company and ask if they require an “OK to Board” status.

Specifics of company registration in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

Maximum number of CEO’s is 4, shareholders – 50. Every business license can be issued in the names of maximum four managers.

The minimum age of the shareholder to obtain an investor/ partner visa is 19 years.

The minimum age of the person to obtain an employment visa is 18 years.

Shareholders not older than 69 can apply for UAE employment visas. Non-shareholders can apply for such visas if they are not older than 59.

The shareholders’ agreement (articles of association) can be issued only for the company that has more than one shareholder. If the company has a single shareholder, it can acquire the agreement (the articles) for an additional fee.

Certain types of the intended business activities may require certain additional documents. For instance, if the company is to give legal advice, the manager’s education certificate has to be provided. If the company deals in education or finance, the manager’s résumé needs to be supplied.

Licenses for some types of business activities require approvals from different UAE government agencies.

The originals of the constitutive documents will be issued to the company constitutors only when the shareholders’ agreement or articles of association (if required) and the rent agreement (if required) are signed and submitted to SHAMS administration.

How to initiate the procedure of having a company registered in SHAMS FEZ of the UAE

To start the company registration process please contact us via e-mail: info@offshore-pro.info. Our experts will give professional advice on the issues related to having a business company registered in SHAMS (Sharjah Media City) FEZ of the UAE.

After that, you will have to pay our commission fee for the assistance in company registration in SHAMS.

You can use any payment method you prefer: a bank card, a Western Union, a WebMoney, or a bank transfer.

The price of our services starts at US$ 2,200.

The state duties, the rent, and the costs of other possible services have to be added to this sum.

After receiving the payment, we will immediately start preparing the necessary documentation. Having a company registered in SHAMS takes 5 working days on average.

Please contact us at info@offshore-pro.info to have your company registered in SHAMS Free Economic Zone of the United Arab Emirates!


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