New Opportunities at DIFC Through Expanded Prescribed Company Regime


· Expanded Prescribed Companies Regime available to wider range of applicants
· The expansion aligns with international best practices and local market requirements

Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), the leading international financial hub in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA) region, has expanded the applicant criteria for its successful Prescribed Companies regime.

The expanded Prescribed Company regime is expected to attract companies to establish structures at DIFC that align with international best practice.

DIFC initially introduced a Prescribed Company regime in 2019, providing cost effective options for firms seeking to use structures from the DIFC, backed by the region’s leading legal and regulatory frameworks. They have been available to companies ranging from family offices, to FinTech entities to Government bodies as well as regulated financial firms. The Prescribed Company regime has been used for structured financing, aviation financing, crowd funding and to hold and manage assets.

The expanded Prescribed Company regime is open to all DIFC non-retail companies, along with their shareholders, UBO’s (Ultimate Beneficiary Owners) and affiliates. It can now also be used by family businesses with a large presence in the UAE.

Prescribed Companies benefit from having flexible office options and can choose from using co-working space or to share offices with a DIFC registered affiliate or Corporate Service Provider. Prescribed Companies also benefit from lower incorporation and annual license fees, and reduced compliance obligations, whereby they are not required to have their accounts audited or filed with the DIFC Registrar of Companies. In addition, prescribed companies are eligible to hire staff and issue visas.

Salmaan Jaffery, Chief Business Development Officer, DIFC Authority commented: “Since the introduction of the Prescribed Company regime during the last quarter of last year, more than 200 prescribed companies have been established at the Centre. By expanding the existing regime, we are offering more businesses the opportunity to manage their company structures cost effectively whilst aligning to world-class standards. DIFC is becoming a more accessible jurisdiction for businesses looking to tap into the MEASA region and its booming opportunities. The regime allows businesses to streamline their structures, supported by DIFC’s leading legal and regulatory framework, further enhancing the legal and regulatory framework at the Centre, which continues to be the most sophisticated and business-friendly Common Law jurisdiction in the region.”


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