A Guide to Obtain an Import/Export License in Dubai


Tally Solutions | Updated on: May 13, 2021

The United Arab Emirates has established itself as the ultimate hub of trade between Europe and East Asia. Being in a strategic location geographically, UAE continues to serve its imports, exports, and re-exports industry on an increasingly large scale. The import and export companies in the UAE have been greatly profited and in fact, the Dubai government has even set up eServices for the companies to have more efficient and easier operations. Since the Dubai import/export registration has been made available online, the process has become rather simple.

Mirsal 2 is the online declaration and clearing system of Dubai Customs. Mirsal’s online portal provides user guides for registration and how to get started with the import-export business in Dubai. While the registration process can be done online, the documents need to be handed over to the Customs Officer in person. To check whether the imported and exported goods fall under the prohibited category, the Customs Office does a thorough check as well. To acquire the rights for import/export activities, businesses must own a license. While this can be easily done online, businesses which import or export restricted goods, they need to acquire a special license from the Customs Office.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to obtaining an import/export license in Dubai:

Export License

The export licence in Dubai is required when a business owner wants to indulge in trading of goods and services produced locally in some other country or among the free trade zones of the UAE. To operate smoothly, one needs to have an approved license by the Ministry. Also, it should be noted that if the goods are exported to any of the Free Trade Zones of the UAE, they need not pay any customs duty. Although the Free Trade Zone is an integral part of UAE, it doesn’t come under the UAE Customs Territory.

To Export the Goods from Dubai, an Entrepreneur Needs to Keep These in Mind:

  • Submit the documents required at the Customs Office
  • Declaration registration fee for export must be paid at the customs office
  • Customs Declaration Certificate is issued by the office

These are the Documents Required to Get an Export License:

  • The licensing agency must give the company an approved Export Declaration Certificate or the Instructions of the Declaration of Goods Application (IDG) as it is mandatory during customs point of entry at the airport.
  • If commodity exported falls in the restricted list, the exporter should have a permit from the regulatory agencies.
  • A Sales invoice providing the description of goods, quantity, and value of each item is required from the company. An invoice should be addressed to the company outside the UAE.

Export of goods can be divided into 2 categories for determining the place of supply… Read to know more

In Case of a Temporary Export, Here’s the Procedure to be followed:

Temporary export is done when goods are transported to a certain location for an interim period and are returned post usage in the exact same condition.

Here are the Documents Which are Required for a Temporary Export Business Transaction:

  • Goods clearing declaration from the authorities
  • Commercial Invoice (original)
  • Packing list with the HS codes
  • Original export permit from the competent agencies in the event of exporting restricted goods
  • A formal letter from the company requesting a temporary export

Import License

A valid import license will allow the business owner to get any commodity inside UAE from other countries. It also allows smooth movement from one of the free trade zones of the Emirates or into a free trade zone from a UAE mainland by fulfilling the country legal necessities in terms of licensing and documents as well as permissions.

To Import the Goods from Dubai, An Entrepreneur Needs to Keep These in Mind:

  • Firstly, post the arrival of the vessel, Bill of Lading must be submitted, and all the dues must be paid off by the importer.
  • The shipping agent will issue the delivery order 3-4 days prior to the arrival of the vessel, and the cargo clearance completion must happen within this period.
  • The Import Declaration form needs to be submitted online, where the importer shall make all the relevant payments. Post this the business will be given a Customs Import Declaration Certificate.
  • Before giving goods to the Cargo, Dubai Customs will check all the required documents and even the vessel at some instances.
  • Post a go-ahead from the Customs Department, the importer can appoint a transport company to receive delivery of commodities
  • However, in case of any extra inspection, the container will go to the inspection area of the competent authority and only after getting a clearance from them can the vessel exit the premises.

Here Are the Documents Which are Required to Import:

  • Invoice mentioning the description of the total quantity of goods and the value of each item addressed to the importer.
  • Certificate of Origin stating the origin of goods approved by the country of origins Chamber of Commerce.
  • A detailed document mentioning the weight of each product in a container, packaging, and HS code for all the items.
  • Import Permit from the competent agencies if importer in importing restricted goods or duty exempted goods.

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