Economic Substance Regulations

The UAE Economic Substance Regulations (ESR) are applicable to all companies registered in the Mainland or Free Zones or Financial Free Zonesin UAE which are licensed to perform  activities as mentioned below:

  • Banking Business
  • Insurance Business
  • Investment Fund Management Business
  • Shipping Business
  • Lease-Finance Business
  • Distribution & Service Centre Business
  • Headquarters Business
  • Intellectual Property Business
  • Holding Company Business

Spectrum’s vast resource of blogs pertaining to Economic Substance Regulations which are updated frequently will give you further information about the activities that are considered in a particular relevant activity, the definition of each activity, what is an Economic Substance Test, who is a licensee, who is exempt from ESR, etc are all discussed in detail. Explore our knowledge base to equip yourself further on this subject or you can just simply mail us to guide you further.

Included in the relevant activity of Economic Substance Regulations

Banking Business:

  • raising funds, managing risk including credit, currency and interest
  • taking hedging
  • providing loans, credit or other financial services to
  • managing capital and preparing reports to investors or any government authority with functions relating to the supervision or regulation of such

Insurance Business:

  • predicting and calculating
  • insuring or re-insuring against risk and providing Insurance Business services to Underwriting insurance and

Investment Fund Management Business:

  • taking decisions on the holding and selling of
  • calculating risk and
  • taking decisions on currency or interest fluctuations and hedging
  • preparing reports to investors or any government authority with functions relating to the supervision or regulation of such

Lease-Finance Business:

  • agreeing funding
  • identifying and acquiring assets to be leased (in the case of leasing).
  • setting the terms and duration of any financing or
  • monitoring and revising any
  • managing any

Headquarters Business:

  • taking relevant management
  • incurring operating expenditures on behalf of group
  • coordinating group

Shipping Business:

  • managing crew (including hiring, paying and overseeing crew members).
  • overhauling and maintaining
  • overseeing and tracking
  • determining what goods to order and when to deliver them, organizing and overseeing

Holding Company Business:

  • all activities related to that business; and in respect of Holding Company Business that derives income from other sources other than dividends and capital gains from its equity interest, the state Core Income-Generating Activities shall be those activities associated with the income

Intellectual Property Business:

  • where the Intellectual Property Asset is a
    1. patent or an asset that is similar to a patent, research and
    2. non-trade intangible (including a trademark), branding, marketing and distribution.
  • if the Relevant Activity is conducted by a Licensee that is regarded as a High Risk IP Licensee, the Core Income-Generating Activity must include any of the following additional activities:
    1. taking strategic decisions and managing (as well as bearing) the principal risks related to development and subsequent exploitation of the intangible asset generating
    2. taking the strategic decisions and managing (as well as bearing) the principal risks relating to acquisition by third parties and subsequent exploitation and protection of the intangible
  • carrying on the ancillary trading activities through which the intangible assets are exploited leading to the generation of income from third

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Distribution and Service Centre Business:

  • transporting and storing component parts, materials or goods ready for
  • managing inventories.
  • taking orders.
  • providing consulting or other administrative

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