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Department of Economic Development (DED) is the regulatory agency in Dubai that oversees the establishment of new businesses, as well as the scrutiny and legitimization of all commercial operations in the city. There are over thousands of business activities in Dubai that have been categorised by the Department of Economic Development and are updated on a yearly basis to help commercial entities enter the UAE market, make cost-effective investments, and ultimately boost business setup in Dubai and throughout the rest of the United Arab Emirates.

What kind of business operations are not allowed in the United Arab Emirates?

Nonetheless, just as every other nation imposes a few limits and restrictions, the Department of Economic Development (DED) in Dubai likewise prohibits a number of commercial operations in the city-state. The Islamic Law is followed by the norms of legislation and authoritative organisations in the United Arab Emirates, and as a result, commercial operations in Dubai are also governed by these rules. As a result, there are a few commercial practises that are prohibited in the nation that you should be aware of.

Commercial and business operations that are not allowed in Dubai include:

Food Products: Alcoholic beverages and pork products are subject to various restrictions on their ability to advertise. Despite the fact that these products are readily accessible on the market. However, in order to have a company established in Dubai or the United Arab Emirates, there are a few rules and regulations that must be followed in the manufacturing, sale, and advertising of these goods.
Gambling is not permitted in Dubai. Casinos, betting shops, sweepstakes, and other gambling-related businesses are not permitted. Any commercial operations in Dubai that are associated with gambling are categorically prohibited.

Pornographic and prostitution materials are considered unlawful commercial activities in most countries across the globe. The United Arab Emirates (UAE) takes severe measures against the creation, distribution, and promotion of pornographic or prostitution materials. Related clubs and networks are also severely fined and sternly punished for engaging in such commercial operations in Dubai or anyplace else in the nation.

UAE is a signatory to numerous international agreements on narcotics and psychotropic drugs, which call for the implementation of internationally recognised control measures to guarantee that such substances are not readily accessible on the black market. Furthermore, Federal Law No. 14 of 1995, which criminalises the manufacture, purchasing, selling, having, and storage of related drugs, guarantees a zero-tolerance approach in the United Arab Emirates.

For this reason, before considering forming an entity in the UAE or proposing a business setup in Dubai, carefully research the different business activities that are permitted and prohibited in the country.