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Dubai International Academic City

Dubai International Academic City (DIAC)

The UAE has proven particularly attractive for international students due to simple visa procedures and the presence of a significant number of reputable higher education institutions, in addition to low travel costs and cultural familiarity for regional students. Dubai has been perhaps the most prolific jurisdiction in the Middle East and around the world in its efforts to attract international branch campuses and develop self-sustaining education and training campuses. According to UNESCO, the emirate has overtaken the U.K. as the third most popular education destination for students from the Middle East, trailing just the United States and France.


Dubai International Academic City plays a key role in enabling, advancing and promoting Dubai’s position on the regional and global education scale. Bringing leading international and regional universities from Australia, UK, India and other parts of the globe to Dubai, offering advanced educational facilities and constantly developing the UAE’s higher education sector.

Dubai International Academic City

Dubai International Academic City (DIAC), is an educational free zone setup under the aegis of Dubai Development Authority. DIAC is informally known as Academic City which was established in the year 2007. It is spread across an area of 12 square kilometres covering an urban area of close to 3000 acres.


Currently Dubai International Academic City is running more than 500 bachelor, master and doctoral programs in various fields of business, engineering, general sciences, humanities, management, medical sciences and technology for an international community hailing from over 150 countries and boasting a strong student strength of 27,500 and counting. While the costs associated with offering programs at DIAC, including rent, are borne by the institution, campuses retain 100 percent ownership of their operations and are able to repatriate profits fully, free from taxes and customs duty.


Dubai International Academic City is one of its kind community nurturing innovation with a diversity of programmes and courses, state-of-the-art facilities and all-year-round events. Facilities include entertainment, retail, fitness, healthcare, hotels and events which area available when required.


Dubai International Academic City

Dubai as an academic hub

Global universities prefer Dubai, for its digital and creative advancement, prime location, futuristic outlook, an abundance of fresh talent and ease of doing business:

  • Young and fresh talent: Dubai is constantly attracting new unique talents looking to join the professional and creative business communities.
  • Strategic location: Dubai’s strategic location gives access to over 2 billion residents, from a unique centralized time zone that combines East and West business hours.
  • Safety and stability: Dubai is ranked as one of the world’s safest cities, an oasis of stability and safety with a unique environment that holds attraction for residents and travellers alike.


Dubai International Academic City

Customized Academic Business Solutions:

Dubai International Academic City’s integrated infrastructure and supportive environment have made it the region’s most sought after academic hub.

Commercial Spaces: Choose from a variety of managed, flexible and strategically located offices and custom campuses that fit your needs.

Co-Working Spaces: Fully integrated and ready to use business infrastructure that enables all types of businesses and freelancers to flourish.


Some famed universities with a campus at DIAC include:

American University, British University, Amity University, University of Birmingham, HULT International Business School, Heriot-Watt University, University of Wollongong, Murdoch University, BITS Pilani, Middlesex University ,The University of Manchester – Manchester Business School.


Dubai International Academic City

What type of companies can be set up in Dubai International Academic City?

DIAC offers business licenses to the following types of companies:

  • New incorporation of a Free Zone Limited Liability Company (FZ-LLC)
  • Branch of an existing foreign/UAE company
  • Freelance permit
  • Licenses and permits are valid for a period of one year and are renewable on an annual basis. DIAC offers different types of office spaces: options include offices which are fitted and non-fitted, in terms of sizes and locations that meet your exact business requirements.


Other important things to keep in mind about DIAC:

  • You can transfer license form another free zone to DIAC
  • To ensure a safe and proper working environment, a company can sponsor one employee per 80 sq. ft. of the leased space
  • You have access to a variety of events in Dubai International Academic City ranging from exhibitions, workshops, career fairs, networking events, sport cups and more
  • DIAC provides support in terms of what courses to offer and the demands of student population
  • DIAC also offers incubator services where the academic institution can begin with a small space to gauge the market and grow from the ground-up


Dubai International Academic City

Apart from the commercial and retail spaces, Dubai International Academic City offers the following value-added features and services:

  • Dedicated business account managers
  • Licensing, registration, immigration and building fit-out permits
  • Networking and market development opportunities
  • Venues for meetings and conferences as well as business centers
  • Venues for corporate, community and social events
  • Dedicated spaces for nurturing innovative ideas
  • Axs: an integrated platform offering  government and corporate services
  • Restaurants, banks, supermarkets, fitness centers, courier services, 24-hour security, prayer areas, Wi-Fi access, facilities management services, and promotional areas for advertisement (kiosks, roll-ups, bus shelters, outdoor branding banners, lake branding)


The benefits of business setup in Dubai International Academic City are:

  • 100% foreign company ownership
  • 100% tax exemption
  • 100% capital and profit repatriation
  • Easy visa process for students, staffs and faculties


Corporate tax applicability to the companies in Dubai International Academic City:

Corporate tax law is going to be applicable for all the companies registered in UAE including the free zones in UAE. The UAE Corporate tax is going to be effective for the financial year beginning on or after 1 June 2023 for the businesses in UAE. Corporate tax will be levied at zero percent on the taxable income (adjusted net profit) of the businesses in the free zones as long as they comply with all the regulations of the respective free zone and do not do any business with the mainland companies, otherwise there is a possibility of levying 9% corporate tax on the taxable income (adjusted net profit) in excess of AED 375,000. Hence companies in the Free Zones need to make sure that they are complying with all the regulations of the free zone and do not do any business with the mainland entities to enjoy the benefit of zero percentage of UAE corporate tax.


{NOTE: Kindly note that the authenticity of this article is limited to the day of publishing this blog. As policies and rules pertaining to each free zone keeps changing from time to time based on the necessity of the respective authority, it is hereby advised you to check the website of the concerned free zone directly to get the latest update on the same. We do not assume any liability if you have taken any decision based on the information provided in the article. We have ensured that the presented information to the visitor is legible to the maximum extent possible so that all the information is available in one page, at one go. Thank you.}


Dubai International Academic City

Why Spectrum Auditing?

Spectrum Auditing is an expert firm in the Company Formation and Company Liquidation process. Our passion and heart lie in serving the clients and we aim at the utmost client’s satisfaction. We are registered Auditors under the Ministry of Economy UAE and also registered Tax Agent from Federal Tax Agency UAE, Dubai providing dedicated Audit, Accounting, Tax services and various Business Advisory Services complying regulatory requirements.

Reach us to have a frills free life in your journey in Dubai, UAE. We at Spectrum will assist you in taking care of all the legal procedures involved in the registration and de-registration of your company in Dubai International Academic City. Call us today for any kind of assistance at +971 4 2699329 or email us at [email protected] to get all your queries addressed. Spectrum is your partner in your success.



Balaram Vuchidi

Managing Director
+971 50 9866 466
[email protected]
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