In the recent times, it has been found that plenty of housewives and other people in UAE are choosing to conduct business from home are selling a range of products such as garments or apparel, beauty items, home decor accessories as well as many other items from their online social media profiles without first securing the approval or appropriate license from the authorities. While this type of cottage industry and small scale business is quite common in India, in UAE such activities are against the trading rules of UAE. The women who come mainly from Pakistan and India are risking even jail time and fines while carrying out such business activities.
Only recently, more than 8000 social networking accounts were completely shut down in a hunt carried out by the Commercial Compliance & Consumer Protection (CCCP) of the Department of Economic Development (DED) as an attempt of protecting the trademarks and getting rid of practices harmful to e-commerce as well as sustainability of business interests in Dubai. In 2016, the total number of accounts with social networking sites that were closed down last year in 2016 was nearly 200% higher than the figures in 2015 in the Dubai business scene. This was so as more number of violators took to the social media last year to sell different types of counterfeit goods, such as bags, watches, perfumes, phones, cosmetics and accessories.
A research into the factors responsible for so many numbers of people carrying out business in UAE without the requisite papers reveals that many people are not actually aware of the fact that they will need a proper business license to carry out business transactions in UAE. There are also those who consider that the fee needed to pay for their license is quite high. Many housewives carry out home based businesses only to improve the financial prospects of the family, never knowing the risk that they run in doing so. This is why it is advised to carry out a proper research of the dos and dont's before starting a small business or you can also contact any of the business management consultancies in UAE to guide you through all the required formalities.
While Facebook and other social media sites can be great ways to seek customers, it cannot serve as validated platforms for business in UAE unless one has the requisite license and papers. To make it convenient for people to carry out legitimate business activities through social networking sites, Business Registration & Licensing (BRL) sector in DED recently launched the ‘e-Trader’ that will allow the GCC citizens with UAE Emirates ID to perform business officially. This license will not only remove obstacles for the social media users who want to conduct business but also enhance accountability along with intellectual property protection. The new license registration process will also boost consumer confidence and remove the risks of infringement on reserved trade names or other types of intellectual properties.
Here are the ways to apply for a business license to carry out a home based/small scale business
- Visit the website ‘www.etradr.ae’ and complete the registration process for e-Trader license by entering various personal details like proof of identity, the kind and nature of business activity as well as the main account through which the services and products will be displayed.
- After all the entries are properly validated and the payment completed, the business license will be issued electronically.
- The license fee for one year is Dh 1070.