100% Ownership for Foreigners while Starting Business on UAE mainland

UAE has approved the FDI law, allowing foreign investors to have 100% business ownership on the mainland, without the support of a local sponsor. The law will come into effect on December 1st, 2020.

As of now, foreign investors are required to have the presence of a local sponsor, who holds 51% of the share, to run a business on the UAE mainland. The FDI law amends 51 articles and added new ones, most of which focus on establishing provisions for companies with limited liability shareholding.

Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and the Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, said, UAE now enjoys a fertile legislative environment for foreign investments, which will increase UAE’s competitiveness.

The Commercial Companies Law (CCL) Law No. 2 of 2015 requires the presence of a local sponsor as the foreign investors were only allowed to hold a maximum of 49% of the share in a limited liability company (LLC) that operates as an onshore UAE business. The local sponsor had to be an Emirati individual or a 100% Emirati owned company who holds 51% of the share in a business.

The FDI law allows expatriates to have 100% ownership in UAE, except for those excluded by the decisions of the Cabinet or for companies that are fully owned by the federal or local governments or their subsidiaries.
The law will benefit the investors who are looking for investment options in the UAE and for the country as a whole. It takes UAE one step closer to their goal in making the country the most suitable place for investments.