Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Located next to the Gulf of Oman and on the Persian Gulf, Dubai is a popular global city with unmatched significance in the global economy. Its strategic location, intensively diverse economy and outstanding trade relations make it a top choice for doing, investing, and expanding the business.

Dubai is a city and an emirate because of its oil industry. This particular industry drove the current success of Dubai as a cosmopolitan metropolis. In 2012, it achieved $90.9 billion GDP and has increased to 10 percent over the next couple of years. The oil and gas industry of the city contributes about 8 percent of its GDP.

At present, the largest source of revenue is on its construction, financial services, information technology, and real estate. Dubai experienced a construction boom which propelled the building of the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa. The city also boasts its cutting-edge infrastructure and benefits from a wide range of connectivity and telecommunications.

Doha, Qatar

Doha is the capital of the state and peninsula of Qatar. The city is another sound alternative when choosing a place to do business in MENA or the Middle East and North Africa regions. Qatar is the top 3 country in terms of the largest GDP per capita in the world. In 2013, Doha has a total population of 1.3 million. It is the prime spot for businesses targeting the Asian markets since its trade partners are Asian countries like South Korea, Japan, and India.

The Ministry of Trade and Business in Qatar is in charge of registering and permitting businesses in the country. It strictly requires that each applicant undergo a lengthy process of registration. If you are interested to open a business in Doha, it is important that you know Arabic or has a partner who understands and speaks Arabic.

This is because the country requires articles of association written in Arabic. Foreigners are not allowed to own the majority of ownership. It is important that you have a business partner who is a national and owns 51 percent of the business. Unfortunately, the partner is not legally required to contribute to the business or even to help in its daily operation. The majority owner can also terminate the operation of the business anytime.

Manama, Bahrain

The tiny island nation of Bahrain in the coast of the Persian Gulf is another ideal place to start a business. It is one of the many countries, which benefitted in the oil boom of the Gulf Coast. Manama, the capital of Bahrain, is an excellent alternative in doing business in the Middle East. The city offers more extensive ownership rights, which allows foreigners to totally own companies and businesses.

Non-nationals are also allowed to own lands or properties that are not included in the designated zones. These regulations allow Manama to be one of the easiest cities to do business. The country has a trade agreement with the United States and other countries all over the world especially those in Asia.

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

The emirate and city of Abu Dhabi is another excellent choice for possible locations to do business in the Middle East. The country is the center of the Emirati government and the home of the president of the United Arab Emirates. The country is one of the top countries in the world in terms of GDP per capita. UAE is currently the richest emirate country.

Abu Dhabi is a city of great economic significance. It is one of the top places for investors looking for new markets. At present has more than $1 trillion in global investments.

Abu Dhabi founded its wealth from its oil, which at the moment account for approximately 60 percent of its GDP. This is equivalent to approximately $165.9 billion. Although its major source of revenue is its oil and gas industry, the city is currently shifting and diversifying. It also focuses on the real estate and tourism industries.

Abu Dhabi is a tax-free city, which makes it an excellent choice for trade. The process for starting a business in Abu Dhabi is the same all throughout the UAE. So, if you plan to start a business, you will need an Emirati partner and let him own the majority of the business or 51 percent or higher.