United Arab Emirates - Selling and buying
Reaching the consumers
The most widespread custom is to market your products through local commercial agent. It is recommended to choose from different distributors or commercial agents in each Emirate. Imports and exports of food products are typically entrusted to companies specialized in this field. This market is dominated by 5 or 6 companies. However, a growing number of food distributors import directly themselves become a distributor and a wholesaler for other more modest establishments. Finally, the companies have the tendency to use the geographical position of Dubai, which is in fact a regional hub, for stocking their goods in this Emirate before re-export to other markets as those of India or Iran. Moreover, the use of franchise has witnesses a significant expansion.
Market access procedures
The UAE is part of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC). In 1981, GCC had established an agreement (Unified Economic Agreement) according to which all farm, animal, industrial products or natural resources of the member States should be exempt from customs duties or any other tax when they conduct intra-GCC trade. GCC is presently in talks with the European Union, Japan and USA for future free-trade agreements.
- Delivery order from a shipping agent addressed to a licensed company by licensing agencies in UAE;
- Original bill of lading (for seaports);
- Original invoice from the exporter addressed to a licensed importer in the country detailing total quantity, goods description and total value for each item (3 exemplaires); *
- Copy of the trade license of buyer and seller;
- Certificate of origin approved by the chamber of commerce at the country of origin detailing the origin of goods; *
- Transport certificate; *
- The Customs entry declaration;
- A form or letter of exemption from customs duties in case the exemption requirements are fulfilled including Local Purchase Order (LPO);
- Detailed packing list as per weight, method of packing and HS code for each individual article contained in the shipment; *
- Import permit from the competent agencies in the event of importing restricted goods; *
- Health or Phytosanitary certificate or an export certificate for the processed products attested by the concerned national department office, confirming that the product is fit for human consumption
- A halal certificate for the meat ingredients; *
- A non-radiation certificate for some products (optional for European products); *
- Transport documents that are required for import clearance.
Documents with a * must be attested by the Embassy of United Arab Emirats and the Chamber of Commerce in the country of origin of products.
Organizing goods transport
The air or surface transport freight remains less important than the maritime transport. According to them, rail transport is non-existant.