Demand for e-Trader licence surges in Dubai

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Wam file photo
Wam file photo

The growth in e-Trader licence issuance shows the increasing momentum of e-shopping in Dubai.


Issac John

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Published: Tue 25 Jan 2022, 1:57 AM

Dubai’s e-Trader licence, an initiative that allows start-ups in the emirate to leverage online and social media for business growth, has seen overwhelming response since its launch in March of 2017 till the end of 2021.

According to official data, 16,409 e-Trader licences have been issued by the Business Registration & Licensing (BRL) sector in the Department of Economy and Tourism (DET) till the end of 2021.

The total number of e-Trader licences issued in 2021 reached 6,217, an increase 6.0 per cent compared 2020 as the total number of licenses reached 5,848 licences.

“This reflects the continuous focus on promoting e-commerce and the competitiveness of Dubai’s economy, as well as the commitment to realising the vision of the government to drive digital transformation and build awareness about the e-platforms that facilitate commercial activities,” DET said in a statement.

The growth in e-Trader licence issuance shows the increasing momentum of e-shopping in Dubai, as the emirate has become a platform for the largest e-commerce companies in the world, led by its flexible business and investment environment, government integration with the private sector and its logistical advantages, as well as strategic location that facilitates global trade, said the statement.

The growth also reflects the ongoing efforts to consolidate the emirate's position as a global platform for e-commerce, based on its importance in driving growth and supporting economic diversification policies.

The 'UAE eCommerce Landscape’ study, conducted jointly by DET and Visa in 2020, showed Dubai leading the list of the fastest-growing and developing e-commerce markets in the Middle East and North Africa, as a result of conducive policies, strategic plans and smart government initiatives initiated by Dubai. This digital transformation has enhanced the confidence of investors in the sector and its opportunities for growth and development, said the statement.

e-Trader aims to licence startups and business activities that operate from their place of residence, online or on social networking sites. The licence, which is issued electronically, aims to guide traders towards the right path to enter the business world.

According to the BRL sector’s report, 79 per cent of the e-Trader licences issued in 2021 were professional, and 21 per cent were commercial. Information Technology, Ready-made garments, Women’s tailoring and design, Handicrafts, Men’s tailoring and design, Publishing and printing services, Facility management, marketing services, and preparation of food, topped the list of activities of the licences issued in 2021.

Through e-Trader licence, DET seeks to regulate and enhance ease of doing business electronically, find a platform that supports and develops trade as well as connect customers with traders. The licensee cannot open a shop/store but can avail of three visas if the ownership is 100 per cent Emirati and legal liability falls under the licence holder. —

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