Shopify Trading License in Dubai, UAE

by Julia Jackle - Jul 29, 2020

Trading License for Dubai / UAE based Shopify stores

Nowadays, it is easier than ever before to set up an online Shopify store in Dubai. However, investors interested in selling their products online are often confused about licensing requirements and government regulations more so when it comes to selling online on e-commerce platforms like Shopify. In many ways, brick and mortar stores are not different from online businesses, especially when it comes to licensing. I mean, for any business to operate in the UAE or Dubai, licenses and government permits are required. However, there are several distinctions that you need to be aware of as an online seller before launching your online Shopify store in the UAE or Dubai.

So, do you need a license to operate a Shopify store in Dubai/UAE?

Definitely yes! All businesses in Dubai, regardless of whether selling online or in a physical store, require a license. The thing is, licensing gives the authorities a way to keep tabs of the businesses operating in their jurisdictions and also track revenue for taxing. If you launch a Shopify store without the necessary permits and licenses, your risk being fined heavily and even your business being shut down for good. To run an e-commerce business, you need first to get an e-trader license which can be procured from the department of economic development as long all the requirements as outlined by the DED are met. The license you apply for will depend on the nature of your business and the products or services you are providing.

For instance, if your Shopify store is selling physical products, but you don’t have warehouses where you are stocking your products, you should consider getting a professional license rather than a commercial license. The thing is, you will depend on local manufacturers and supplies to ship the products directly to buyers. Since yours will be more of a service company, a professional license will the idealist option for you. On the hand, if you will be stocking products, exporting or importing them to consumers, a commercial license will be ideal since it allows you to trade.

Besides the license, you will also need to choose a location for your business depending on its nature and the products you are dealing with. The two options include Dubai mainland, which is under DED or free zones appropriate for your business. Under the Dubai authority, you will be applying for an e-commerce license while in the free zones, you should be seeking a Particular e-commerce license. The decision is yours depending on the nature of your business, the products you are selling and also your needs and preferences.

Bottom line

As in any place in the world, you will require a license to operate. Which is similar to an e-commerce business in Dubai. Therefore, brace yourself to acquire the necessary license and permits that will allow you to run your Shopify store smoothly in Dubai.

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About the Author:
Julia Jackle
Julia is the co-founder and CEO of Creative971 and has written blogs in the past for the Entrepreneur Magazine UAE. Her extensive knowledge in the E-Commerce industry in the UAE and GCC is widely appreciated.

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