Start an accounting or tax consulting business in Dubai or the UAE

Qualified tax consultants, accountants and bookkeepers are in demand across the globe, but business is booming in Dubai and the UAE. In this article, we will explore how to start an accounting or tax consulting business in Dubai and the UAE. We will cover the following topics:

  • Tax and accounting business in Dubai or the UAE
  • Steps to get an account licence in the UAE
  • Cost of starting an accounting business in the UAE
  • Why choose SPC Free Zone?

Tax and accounting business in Dubai and the UAE

In the past decade, as the startup scene in Dubai and the UAE has expanded exponentially, demand for qualified tax auditors, bookkeepers and accountants has rocketed. This demand shows no signs of slowing down either. With the government driving efforts to create an appealing business ecosystem for startups and SMEs, more and more businesses are looking to outsource their financial operations.

For almost all onshore registered companies in the UAE, an annual licence renewal requires a mandatory annual audit too. Businesses registered in free zones may not need to submit this document to local authorities to keep hold of their licence, but it is still a legal obligation to keep all financial records of the company, regardless of whether they need to submit the report.

Furthermore, many businesses will need to submit an audit or updated financial records for business matters, such as bank loans. That’s a lot of potential business and opportunity for local tax and accounting businesses.

There are other benefits to starting an accounting business in Dubai and the UAE too, such as:

  • Increasing demand

The government is taking significant steps to diversify the economy, offering incentives to startup businesses, specialist talent and specific industries. Such businesses require financial support.  

  • Introduction of corporate tax

The UAE recently announced the introduction of corporate tax in 2023 for mainland businesses. These firms will need to prepare their books to be compliant with the new laws and will be looking for accounting and tax consulting businesses to help them achieve this.

  • Large expatriate community

Around 80% of the UAE’s population are expats. Most of these business owners are unlikely to be familiar with local tax and financial customs, so will be looking for additional financial services support.

  • Business-friendly infrastructure

The UAE is one of the most digitally connected countries in the world, with first-rate services, facilities and infrastructure.

  • Easy business setup

With help from SPC Free Zone’s bespoke company formation services, you can have your tax or accounting consultancy business up and running in no time. 

What do you need to set up an accounting or tax consultancy in Dubai or the UAE?

In order to open an accounting, tax or bookkeeping consultancy in the UAE, you will need to ensure that you have the correct professional licence. You will also need specific accreditation to work in the profession, though this may vary depending on the specifics of your work. For instance, you may need an accounting degree or special qualifications for more specific services, such as forensic accounting and SOX auditing. You will also need to be able to prove relevant financial or auditing experience, with the possibility of an inspection too.

Steps to getting an accounting licence in the UAE

Ready to set up your tax or accounting consultancy in the UAE but unsure where to start? The process is relatively straightforward, but you’ll need to ensure you’ve ticked all the boxes to get up and running. We’ve broken the process down into three simple steps:

Step 1: Submitting your application

To acquire a professional licence, you will need to submit an application. This document details your business activity (or activities), as well as your company name. Remember, the UAE has strict rules around business names. You should ensure that the name is not already registered and make sure you steer clear of any words that could be considered offensive or blasphemous. Providing there are no bumps along the way, you can receive your professional licence in as little as two hours with SPC Free Zone.

Step 2: Authorise access to e-channel services

In order to help speed up the business setup process, the UAE has introduced an e-channel service that eliminates any unnecessary paperwork. To benefit from this service, you will need to sign up for the portal. It will make it easier for you to obtain your entry permit too. This entry permit will allow you to stay in the region for up to 60 days.

Step 3: Activate your status change

When you have received your entry permit, you’ll be able to activate your change in status. To do this, you will either need to activate this in Dubai or elsewhere in the UAE, or exit and re-enter the appropriate emirate. SPC Free Zone can help advise on the best way to do this depending on your country of citizenship. The UAE requires all visitors to undergo a series of medical tests to enable them to acquire an Emirates ID. This ID card is essential since you will require one to open a bank account. Without it, you won’t get paid.

While the steps to getting an accountancy licence in the UAE may seem straightforward, they can be difficult to navigate for outsiders. Our friendly business advisors at SPC Free Zone can help you navigate each stage to make the process as pain-free and affordable as possible.

Cost of starting up an accountancy business in the UAE

The cost of a trade licence in the UAE starts at AED 5,750. However, the final cost will depend on a number of factors, such as the free zone in which you are applying for a licence, the number of licence activities, the number of shareholders, and other factors.

SPC Free Zone offers some of the most affordable business setup packages in the market but you should also keep in mind additional costs, such as e-channel registration, medical tests, and Emirates ID cards.

Get in touch with the SPC Free Zone team today for a free quote tailored to your specific requirements.

Why choose SPC Free Zone?

SPC Free Zone offers fast, flexible and affordable business setup in the UAE. Conveniently located right in the heart of Sharjah, just 15 minutes from Dubai International Airport, we offer onsite immigration services. That means that you can get your UAE professional licence issued in less than two hours.

Dedicated to helping you build and expand your business, SPC Free Zone offers up to 20 visas under one licence, a dual-licence option offering both mainland and free zone on the same licence and a choice of more than 1,500 business activities.

Add to this, zero paid-up share capital, 0% corporate and personal income tax and 100% foreign ownership, and it is little wonder why thousands of aspiring entrepreneurs have chosen to work with SPC Free Zone.

Ready to set up a successful accounting or tax consultancy business in Dubai and the UAE? Reach out to SPC Free Zone today for a helping hand.

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