Why you should open a company particularly in the UAE, not in Cyprus or EU countries

This article describes advantages of registration of a company in the UAE. Also, we will explain why today it is better to establish a company particularly in the Arab Emirates.

In 2015, the European Union approved the directive “Anti-money laundering” (“AML”), under which European countries must disclose the registers of beneficiaries. This directive is to promote measures related to anti-money laundering.

According to the latest revision of this directive “AML 4”, more and more EU countries try to take measures on establishment of the register of final owners of companies (beneficiaries) and forward this information to European legislative bodies.

 The work is also being done in Slovakia and Belgium. Meanwhile, the Netherlands (which means also offshore territories Curacao and Aruba) plan to launch this register in 2021. In Cyprus, this register will become active already in 2020.

Consequently, in Europe there will be practically no country where owners of companies will obtain confidentiality and safety of business-making. In Ireland, the register of final owners of companies will also be formed in 2020.

It should be noted than on British Virgin Islands (“BVI Offshore Company”) the register of final beneficiaries had been formed since 2018. Subject to the specially developed law, “Beneficial Ownership Secure Search System Act, 2017” authorities may disclose information on company founders on BVI and take measures to find the final beneficiaries. Moreover, several Caribbean jurisdictions introduce mandatory requirements on presence of employees and availability of a real office in their territories.

Alterations in rules on establishment of companies in Cyprus that come into force in 2020

Since 2020, Cyprus under the pressure of the European Union will lose its advantage of a tax-free jurisdiction. Until the early 2020, subject to the directive “AML 4“, Cyprus will have to form the register of final beneficiaries of companies that will be maintained by “DRCOR” (Department of registration/liquidation of companies of Cyprus). Currently alterations are being made in the Law of Cyprus “On commercial companies”. The register will be available not only for tax or legislative bodies, but also for the special establishment “MOKAS” — financial intelligence and body preventing money laundering.

Owners of companies in Cyprus will finally lose their confidentiality because this register will also include banks and registration agents; meanwhile, trusts will have to forward all the information to the register.

Changes in rules of company establishing in the Netherlands that come into force in 2021

The same register is being formed in the Netherlands, the country famous for its low taxes.

Provisions of the Law on search and maintaining of the register of beneficiaries will cover:

  • “Besloten Vennootschap” (“BV”) – Private companies with limited responsibility;
  • “Naamloze Vennootschap” (“NV”) – Public companies;
  • “Stichting” — Private funds.

Laws of the Netherlands will be less strict than Laws of Cyprus, as the Netherlands plan to collect information only regarding companies where a beneficiary owns a share of more than 25%.

Alterations in rules on establishment of companies in Ireland that will come into force in 2020

In March this year Ireland approved the legislative act “Statutory Instrument” number 110 dated 2019 (“SI 110”), subject to which the register of final beneficiaries is established in Ireland.

Adoption of the law “SI 110” is realization of requirements of the EU Directive 2015/849/EU and the EU Directive 2018/843/EU (“On prevention of using the financial system to launder money or financing terrorism”) on maintaining the register of beneficiary owners of companies registered in Ireland.

In Ireland, beneficiary owners are considered natural persons who directly or indirectly (through other legal entities) own more than 25% of shares or voting rights of an Irish company. In absence of such persons, or when there are enough reasons for doubt in their beneficiary ownership, then natural persons being the company management are recognized its beneficiary owners.

Why you should open a company in the UAE

By registering a company in the UAE, you obtain multiple benefits, in particular:

  • absence of taxes;
  • confidentiality;
  • safety;
  • full owning a company.

Since 2018, the Arab Emirates are not anymore in the black list of countries. Besides, Russia has also excluded the UAE from the black list since February 2019 based on the Decree of the Federal Tax Service dated 4 February 2019 number ММV-7-17/786.

The Arab Emirates do not have a unified federal system for registration of companies. Companies which are located in free trade zones are registered by Administrations of these zones.

Free trade zone or free economic zone (FTZ),or a free zone is a limited district in the emirates that is a separate jurisdiction from the UAE. Within FTZ, companies can be registered. Each free zone of the UAE defines its own rules governing the operation of companies.

Registration of company in the UAE in free trade zonе – price of registration of a company in the Arab Emirates in 2020.

Offshore companies are registered by registration agents. Therefore, there is no unified register of companies, shareholders and beneficiaries in the UAE.

According to the laws of the UAE, companies dealing with registration of entities are prohibited to disclose information on shareholders of companies (except requests of Interpol).

There is no public register of shareholders in the Arab Emirates. The certificate of registration of a company does not state names of shareholders. Moreover, in the UAE you may open a company with either real or virtual office.

it is important to note that the UAE imposes quite simple requirements on registration on companies. For example, a company in the free zone “UAQ FTZ” can be registered without arrival of a shareholder to the emirates, if he/she had previously visited the UAE and can provide a scanned passport page with an entry of arrival. In such a case, a founder arrives to the UAE only for visa sticking, which greatly saves time. If arrival marks are absent in a passport, then personal visit to the emirates is necessary.

Registration of a company in the UAE allows obtaining resident visa UAE! Such visa also allows executing visas for family members.

We offer assistance in selection and registration of a company that will suit your business needs; please contact us at [email protected]


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