Dubai Free Zones to Implement One Free Zone Passport for Their Companies

The Dubai Free Zones Council (DFZ Council) held its 13th meeting, headed by His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of the DFZ Council, to review the progress in developing a comprehensive geo-economic map of Dubai that seeks to position the emirate as a leading destination for investment and business set-up.

The Council also discussed several other initiatives, including proposals related to long-term rental agreements for investors in Dubai’s free zones, the one free zone passport – a unified license that allows businesses to operate across the emirate’s free zones with the aim of boosting its attractiveness for international companies, the Free Zone 10X platform.

Speaking on the agenda of the meeting, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said: “The initiatives of the DFZ Council, such as the geo-economic map, bring added value to the local economy.

Developments on the economic front transcend geographical borders and support the implementation of innovative projects in line with the priorities articulated in the recent Letter of the New Season from His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.”

He added: “The coordinated efforts among the free zones in Dubai contribute to economic diversification – an essential pillar of the economy of the future.

This creates a favorable environment to bring groundbreaking concepts to life. Greater coordination also paves the way for sustainable development and presents exceptional opportunities to attract SMEs and international companies and empower entrepreneurs to realize their creative ideas. In turn, these opportunities strengthen Dubai’s pioneering status as a creativity lab and global capital of innovation, in line with His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s vision of establishing free zones in Dubai.”

In closing, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said: “Dubai’s keenness to innovate has laid the foundation for prosperity.

 

Our commitment to adopting the latest technologies and building a comprehensive infrastructure puts us in prime position to play a leading role in shaping the economy of the future.”

The Council reviewed the progress made on developing a geo-economic map of Dubai that is on track as per the 2030 strategic plan.

 

The team working on the initiative comprises a diverse group of professionals, including representatives of the Ministry of Economy, the Department of Economic Development in Dubai, Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Dubai Development Authority, Jebel Ali Free Zone, the Dubai International Financial Centre, Dubai Customs, and Dubai Municipality.

 

Moreover, the Council members discussed the draft law proposal related to systemizing rental agreements in Dubai’s free zones in coordination with the Dubai Land Department and free zone authorities with the aim of providing a larger pool of real estate options for companies.

 

One suggestion was to extend the long-term rental duration from the current 25 years to 50 years.

In addition, participants examined the one free zone passport initiative that allows companies licensed at a single free zone to also operate in other free zones in Dubai without the need for a second license.

 

In addition, the DFZ Council reviewed the initiative that aspires to boost the emirate’s attractiveness and encourage international companies to set up their regional headquarters in Dubai through a campaign that highlights four characteristics of the emirate – a center of excellence for research and development, a gateway into the Middle East, Africa, and Asia, a hub for entrepreneurship and advanced technology, and an ideal environment for business. In its first phase, the campaign seeks to attract 400 international companies across diverse sectors.

 

Furthermore, the Council members discussed the Free Zone 10X platform, aimed at establishing a financial market that provides companies registered in free zones with funding through IPO listings. An ongoing study, conducted in coordination with relevant parties, is researching the legislative and logistical requirements for implementing the initiative.

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