Top Emerging Business Destinations – Sharjah


Its location, affordable real estate, open business environment and booming population make Sharjah the perfect place to set up a company in the U.A.E. Explore this article to discover the advantages of setting up your company in Sharjah.

Sharjah has engaged in a considerable modernisation drive to renew its appeal to international investors through diversifying its industries. Although the UAE accounts for 10% of the world’s proven oil reserves, Sharjah holds just 1.5 billion barrels of oil. The government sought to industrialise Sharjah’s economy from the 1980s to reduce its reliance on oil, and the emirate has experienced considerable success in diversifying its economy. Yet a large part of Sharjah’s success can also be attributed to its affiliation with the UAE, a country that has developed a reputation among international investors for its economic and political stability. Despite experiencing considerable setbacks during the 2008 financial crisis, observers have maintained that the country managed the effects of the downturn astutely, and its ability to avoid the 2010 Arab Spring uprisings which affected the political stability of some of its neighbours further boosted its status as one of the Middle East’s safe havens.

Sharjah is host to a diverse collection of enterprises and has high demand for businesses across all industries. Read on to view a description of the seven types of companies currently permitted to operate in Sharjah. And if you have any questions, we are always here to help.

Limited Liability Company (LLC)

A LLC is a company with a limited liability clause, where the number of partners cannot exceed fifty and may not be less than two. The partner is only liable to the extent of his or her share in the total capital. A LLC in Sharjah requires a U.A.E. national partner in all cases, with a shareholding of not less than 51% of the paid-up capital.

Partnership Company

A partnership company is a company held by two or more partners who become jointly liable to the extent of 100% of the shares for the company’s liabilities. All partners are required to be U.A.E. Nationals.

Local Services Agent License or Business Partnership License

Individual establishments are owned by only one individual with the purpose of practicing any business or professional activity. The company’s financial liability falls to the owner, as he bears all fiscal obligations of the company.

If the owner of the company is not a U.A.E. or GCC citizen, the license must be regulated through a local Service Agent, who must be a U.A.E. national and must be an individual and not a legal entity.

Foreign Company Branch

The branch office of a company home-based in a foreign country. Concerned parties must submit an application for preliminary license approval for a branch of a foreign company.

Local Company Branch

The branch of a company in another emirate within the UAE. Concerned parties must submit an application for preliminary license approval for a branch of a local company.

GCC Company Branch

The branch of a company originating and based in a Gulf Cooperation Council country other than the U.A.E. Concerned parties must submit an application for preliminary license approval for a branch of a GCC company.

Public and Private Shareholding Companies

A Public Shareholding Company is a company in which the share capital is divided into tradeable shares with equal value. The liability of each partner is limited to their share in the total capital. Public shareholding companies will not be licensed unless there are at least ten founders on the MoA, and the company’s share capital is over AED 10 million.

As above, save for the following: the number of founders must be more than, or equal to three; share capital must be more than AED 2 million; the shares of a private shareholding company cannot be offered to the public.

Zola Group offers holistic corporate services to local and global business clients. Our most popular comprehensive services include company setup, incorporation, residency and banking services. Contact our professional corporate services consultants via phone or email to inquire about how we can help you achieve success in this region's most rewarding emerging market.