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Open bank account

Opening an account in Dubai, UAE

 

Page content

  1. How to open different types of accounts in Dubai and use all benefits UAE offers
  2. Personal bank account in Dubai, UAE
  3. The list of documents you need to provide for personal account
  4. Document and official compliance regulations for a personal resident account opening are quite gentle
  5. Banks in UAE for opening personal accounts
  6. Privileged private accounts
  7. Corporate / Business accounts in Dubai
  8. The list of documents to be provided for business account in Dubai
  9. Banks in UAE for corporate / business accounts
  10. Withdrawal and deposit of money / cash
  11. Business loans, personal loans and Mortgages
  12. KYC requirements of the UAE banks – for private and personal accounts
  13. 5 Important tips you need to know for opening bank account in Dubai, UAE
  14. Cheques / cheque books in the UAE
  15. Most common terms for the cheques in Dubai and other parts of the UAE
  16. Summary
  17. Open bank account in Dubai, UAE

How to open different types of accounts in Dubai and use all benefits UAE offers

The UAE banks, such as, Emirates NBD (ENBD), Mashreq Bank, Noor Bank as well as foreign banks being present in the country such as Standard Chartered have significant advantages in comparison to most international banks outside of the United Arab Emirates. Such of Dubai banks advantages include reasonable requirements on provision of documents, high quality of service, very advanced remote account management through online banking and telephone. Opening an account in Dubai, UAE is the proven and beneficial solution for personal purposes and for companies operational locally as well as for doing international business.

Any account opening in Dubai, UAE – personal or corporate - requires a personal presence of the account holder. You need to come to the United Arab Emirates for one day only to fulfil this official requirement which is imposed by the UAE Central Bank and applies to all banks in the UAE.

Personal bank account in Dubai, UAE

If you are not a resident of the United Arab Emirates and would like to open a personal account, you have certain limitations on the choice of banks which open non-resident accounts. Though, there are good banks in Dubai to choose from which offer non-resident personal accounts, thus this limitation is not of a real concern.

You need to provide personal details in form of a CV (Curriculum Vitae on your professional and business experience) and certain standard documents to proceed with the account opening.

The list of documents you need to provide for personal account:

  • Passport;
  • Latest utility bill;
  • Your current bank statement for 6 months;
  • Info on source of the incoming funds.

Important additional note – for the personal accounts for non-residents of the UAE, banks have higher requirements on the minimum balance to be kept on the account. Such requirement is different from bank to bank and range from 800,- to 1.500,- USD or its equivalent in other currency per currency account.

Alternatively, you have the opportunity to open a resident personal account. You need to obtain a residency visa either through your own company registration in the UAE or property purchase to have an account of this type. The process of opening a personal account for the UAE resident is more flexible and there is a larger list of banks to choose from.

The official compliance regulations for a personal resident account opening are quite gentle. The documents you need to provide are:

  • Passport with UAE visa page;
  • Emirates ID (Emirates Identity card);
  • Utility bill (bill for water or electricity).

The requirements to maintain minimum balance for personal resident account in Dubai are absolutely minimal. The account can be used to receive transfers from corporate accounts and vice versa under the condition that your bank understands the nature of such transactions.

The overall benefits of a resident account: full online banking facilities, debit cards which can be upgraded to premium and platinum cards with higher withdrawal limits and VISA/MasterCard credit cards, cheque book which gives the flexibility of payments throughout UAE as the preferred method of payment.

Banks in UAE for opening personal accounts:

Bank

Minimum account balance

Account for non-residents

Time to open an account

Emirates NBD (ENBD)

AED 5.000,-

Yes

1-3 weeks

Noor Bank

AED 3.000,-

Yes

2-4 weeks

Mashreq Bank

AED 5.000,-

Yes

1-3 weeks

Standard Chartered

AED 20.000,-

For residents only

1-2 weeks

ADCB (Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank)

AED 20.000,-

For residents only

1-2 weeks

Privileged private accounts

There is also the option of opening privileged account in UAE banks – for residents as well as for non-residents. Such accounts have some clear advantages including shorter time for account opening, assigned personal account manager, better exchange rates as well as other useful benefits. The minimum requirement balance starts from USD 100.000,- or its equivalent in other currency to quality for this type of account.

Corporate / Business accounts in Dubai

If you need an account for business purposes, a personal account cannot be used for it, which means you need to open a corporate / company account. Earlier, it was possible to open corporate bank accounts in the UAE for foreign companies – onshore as well as offshore, for example BVI (British Virgin Islands), Seychelles, etc. Nowadays opening an account is practically achievable for UAE companies and the daughter companies of the foreign companies only.

When considering an option on opening a business / corporate account in Dubai you have two main possibilities to choose – opening a UAE offshore company (RAK ICC or JAFZA) and account for it or opening a UAE free zone onshore company (DMCC, SAIF, etc) and opening an account for it. Both companies may be 100 % foreign owned. So, what is the difference? These major differences are as follows:

  • Account with UAE offshore company – less costly, however much harder to open bank account plus higher requirements on minimum account balance. The company account is NOT considered to be resident which means it is under strict official compliance regulations.
  • Account with UAE onshore company – such company is more cost-intensive to register, however gives you the option to get the personal UAE residency visa as well as qualifies your business account as the UAE-resident with the associated advantages such as less regulations, reduced account balance requirements, larger choice of banks, etc.

For business accounts, apart from the standard personal documents on company shareholders which are similar to the documents for a personal account, the respective corporate documents are to be provided.

The list of documents to be provided for business account in Dubai:

  • Company memorandum and articles;
  • Certificate of incorporation / License – depending on the company type;
  • Documents on corporate structure and ownership;
  • Description on the planned activities of a company;
  • Information on the business experience of the company owners;
  • Info and documents on source of funds which would be invested into company.

When assisting with account opening we provide the entire support on preparing your personal documents as well as registering companies in the UAE and providing all its documents to banks.

Banks in UAE for corporate / business accounts:

Bank

Minimum account balance

Account for offshore companies

Time to open an account

Emirates NBD (ENBD)

USD 54.000,-

or USD 137.000

Yes, with restrictions

2-4 weeks

Noor Bank

USD 5.500,-

For onshore companies only

2-4 weeks

Masreq Bank

USD 6.500

or USD 41.000

Yes, with restrictions

1-3 weeks

ADCB (Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank)

USD 5.500,-

For onshore companies only

1-3 weeks

It is necessary to note that opening bank account for offshore companies has become rather complicated thus, for majority of cases, we suggest to open account with UAE onshore companies.

Withdrawal and deposit of money / cash

Cash deposit and withdrawal from private and corporate accounts – resident and non-resident – can be performed over numerous branches each bank has in the UAE. Alternatively, you can use the ATM (Automatic Teller Machines) cards which are provided along with the account opening. On top of it you can apply for credit cards which can be used for payments and cash withdrawals in the United Arab Emirates and abroad.

Business loans, personal loans and Mortgages

When talking about possible loans and credits from the UAE banks first of all we need to clearly underline that no loans can be provided to foreign companies not residing in the UAE or persons – non-UAE residents.

For business loans, companies, apart from being UAE-registered, must be able to qualify for main prerequisites. These include minimum 3 years of successful operations in the United Arab Emirates, positive financial results, provision of the necessary documents to the bank on the project / asset to be financed.

For personal loans – same rules apply – info on personal background in terms of financial status and income to be provided such as bank statement for 1 year and a salary certificate signed and stamped by current employer. The permanent salary must be reflected in the bank statement. For business persons – the detailed info on the financials and personal income received.

KYC requirements of the UAE banks – for private and personal accounts

Nowadays there are international standards and requirements for banks in terms of their KYC (Know Your Customer) policies and procedures. Same applies to banks in the United Arab Emirates. All banks are regulated by the UAE central bank which applies all the protocols to be followed by banks.

These rules and protocols state clear guidelines banks must follow within opening of personal and corporate accounts procedures. This is also applicable after an account has been opened thus this is the regular praxis when a UAE bank may ask you some documents or comments on your transactions on the account.

5 Important tips you need to know for opening bank account in Dubai, UAE

  • Your choice of banks depends on your status – if you are resident or non-resident;
  • For business purposes – only company / corporate accounts can be used;
  • Different banks have different requirements on minimum account balances;
  • For employed persons an NOC (Non Objection Certificate) from an employee is required to open bank account;
  • For your account not to become dormant you shall use it at least once in 6 month.

Cheques / cheque books in the UAE

Some certain specifics are to be noted in terms of the use of cheque books in the UAE. This payment form is highly popular and widely recognized. In some areas, it is the absolutely prevalent method of payment, for example, when renting a property – residential or commercial. Majority of rental payments are done through cheques.

Most common terms for the cheques in Dubai and other parts of the UAE are:

  • Regular cheques vs post-dated cheques – these are the same cheques, but with only one difference, regular cheque is issued with the current date and post-dated cheque – with the date in the future;
  • Banker / Manager cheques – these are the cheques which are issued upon your request by your bank. In comparison with regular cheques when its clearing is linked with the availability of funds on your account, the managers / bankers cheques are issued by banks which automatically block the respective amount on your account meaning these cheques are guaranteed in terms of payment.

Summary

UAE banking system is highly advanced and very internationally-oriented. All banks provide services in Arabic as well as English language. The banking as such is also available as Islamic banking and standard one. Banks greatly differ in terms of services and specifics, which means all of you can find the solution which is the best for his particular purposes.

Dubai-freezone provides exceptional opportunity for prompt and easy opening of bank accounts in Dubai and UAE!

Our company provides a wide range of services relating to incorporation and administration of business in the United Arab Emirates. If you choose our company - you will get within a short period of time your own account in one of the banks in Dubai that, in turn, will facilitate your company’s goals.

Our experts will help you choose the bank subject to your business objectives and will help prepare all necessary documents. Our company has extensive experience in this area of business. We will perform everything within a short period of time, at a reasonable price and with minimal involvement on your part. The aforesaid advantages will allow you to save money, time and avoid a number of issues. To avail of our services, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Do you intend to open a bank account in Dubai or another Emirate of the UAE? Then Dubai-freezone is the right choice!

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Executive summary

Large number of private persons and companies choose UAE as the favorite destination to open bank accounts. This is the fact and the reasons for it that it offers undeniably safe and secure banking services combined with the highly international and entrepreneur-centered spirit.

Dubai offers all types of banking services and has the clear and perfectly regulated account opening procedures and other parts of regulatory frameworks. In our comprehensive overview, we provide all the facts you need to know on UAE banks and its differences. It also gives you all the data on how to choose a right financial institution in Dubai, which documents would be essential and highlights other highly valuable features you may enjoy once your account is opened.

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