How to trade in Dubai in 2023

Trade in dubai

Did you know the trade market in Dubai is recognized as one of the world’s most advanced and influential? The Dubai Financial Market (DFM) has gained recognition for its exceptional regulation and commitment to international best practices. It serves as a gateway to the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, offering a welcoming and investor-friendly environment.  

With the wholehearted support of UAE authorities, potential investors receive valuable assistance, ensuring a smooth start to their trading journey. Whether it’s obtaining essential documentation or setting up trading accounts, you can count on their guidance.

 Join us as we delve into the details of trading in the United Arab Emirates, empowering you to embark on your business ventures confidently on the dynamic DFM trading floor.

Why trade in Dubai?

Investing in Dubai and the Dubai Financial Market offers several compelling factors that ingrain confidence in investors:

Strong Economy:

The United Arab Emirates boasts a highly diversified economy, with non-oil sectors contributing around 72% to its GDP. Unlike many other Middle Eastern countries, the UAE’s economy is resilient and offers stability. Additionally, the nation’s per capita income is among the highest globally, signaling prosperous opportunities.

Pro-Business Environment:

 The UAE consistently ranks favorably in the International Doing Business Index, a World Bank study evaluating business regulations and environments. In 2020, it secured the 16th position out of 190 economies. The country’s business-friendly climate, minimal taxes, specific company setup procedures, and excellent infrastructure support facilitate entrepreneurial initiatives.

Lucrative Opportunities:

Whether you prefer online or offline trading, the UAE provides diverse avenues to generate income. The nation’s thriving business landscape offers ample possibilities to explore and capitalize on various opportunities.

By considering these significant elements, investing in Dubai and the Dubai Financial Market becomes an attractive choice for discerning investors seeking a robust and promising investment destination.

Dubai and the UAE extend a warm welcome to foreign investors

Embracing them with open arms through a range of investor-friendly policies that touch the hearts of entrepreneurs:

trade in dubai
Ownership Opportunities:

The UAE Ministry of Economy empowers foreign investors by allowing them to fully own their UAE companies. This signifies the trust and belief the government places in the entrepreneurial spirit of individuals, providing them with the freedom to bring their visions to life and shape their own destinies.

Diverse Workforce:

Dubai and the UAE proudly celebrate their multicultural society, with foreign nationals contributing significantly to the workforce, comprising around 80% to 90% of the total. This rich diversity not only creates a harmonious environment but also fosters a vibrant exchange of cultures, ideas, and perspectives, making every entrepreneur feel at home in this melting pot of talent.

Global Workweek Alignment:

 Recognizing the importance of seamless global business operations, the UAE government has transitioned the workweek for state-run offices to align with international norms. By adopting a Monday-to-Friday schedule, they enable businesses to connect with partners worldwide more effectively, ensuring smoother collaboration and strengthening bonds across borders.

Favorable Taxation:

The UAE’s investor-friendly tax regime adds a touch of relief for entrepreneurs. With no personal income tax (except for a flat 5% value-added tax), individuals can retain more of their hard-earned profits. This allows them to invest back into their businesses, nurture growth, and create positive impacts within their communities.

Through these policies, Dubai and the UAE demonstrate their genuine commitment to fostering an inclusive and supportive environment for foreign investors. By nurturing entrepreneurship, embracing diversity, promoting global connectivity, and offering favorable tax conditions, they provide a platform for dreams to flourish, enabling individuals to make a meaningful impact and build a brighter future.

Different types of trade markets in Dubai and what are the available indexes

Certainly! In Dubai, you’ll discover a captivating array of trade markets that cater to different interests and needs. Let’s take a closer look:

trade in dubaiAs you stroll through the bustling streets of Dubai’s Gold Souk in Deira, the vibrant displays of gold, diamonds, and precious gemstones will catch your eye. The market’s rich heritage and craftsmanship make it a treasure trove for those seeking exquisite jewelry pieces.

Experience the lively and fragrant ambiance of Naif Souk and Satwa Souk. These vibrant markets are filled with an abundance of vibrant fabrics, flowing garments, and stunning accessories. Whether you’re seeking traditional Arabic attire or trendy fashion choices, you’ll discover a wide range of options to perfectly complement your personal style.

Enter the captivating Perfume Souk in Deira, where delightful fragrances fill the air. Let yourself be carried away by the countless scents and embark on a journey into the realm of perfumes and essential oils. Explore a wide range of distinctive blends, traditional Arabian attars, and enchanting aromas that truly mesmerize the senses.

Lose yourself in the aromatic Spice Souk of Deira, where the air is filled with the heady scent of spices and herbs. Explore the colorful stalls brimming with cumin, cardamom, saffron, and other exotic ingredients. Engage with the friendly vendors as you seek the perfect flavors to enhance your culinary creations.

Feel the excitement and technological buzz at places like Al-Fahidi Street and Al Ain Center. Here, you’ll find a hub of electronics trade, from the latest gadgets to cutting-edge devices. Engage with knowledgeable salespeople who can guide you through the world of technology.

As for the available indexes, Dubai offers key indicators that reflect the pulse of its financial markets:

Dubai Financial Market (DFM) Index:

The index serves as a reflection of Dubai’s stock market, capturing the performance of listed companies on the Dubai Financial Market. It symbolizes the vibrant spirit of Dubai’s economy and the progress of its businesses, demonstrating their growth and success.

Dubai’s stock market consists of three primary stock indices, comprising companies listed on the DFM.

The detailed performance data for each of the indices can be found on the website of DFM.

DFM General Index

The DFM General Index is an important benchmark that shows how well the market is doing in Dubai. It represents the overall performance of companies listed on the Dubai Financial Market (DFM). This index is designed to give market participants a complete and complementary set of indexes to understand the market as a whole. Investors and analysts rely on the DFM General Index to get insights into the overall market trends and make informed decisions about investing in Dubai.

S&P/Hawkamah UAE ESG Index

The S&P/Hawkamah UAE ESG Index is a benchmark that evaluates the environmental, social, and governance (ESG) performance of companies in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

DFM Shari'a Index

 The DFM Shari’a Index is a stock index in Dubai that consists of companies following Islamic principles. It serves as a benchmark for tracking the performance of Shari’a-compliant companies in the Dubai Financial Market.


Nestled within the prestigious Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), NASDAQ Dubai specializes in equity derivatives. It provides a platform for investors to engage in a range of financial instruments, including single-stock futures and options, further expanding the horizons of Dubai’s financial landscape.

These indexes embody the resilience, ambition, and growth of Dubai’s financial markets, showcasing the city’s commitment to excellence and innovation

Step-by-Step Process to Start Trading in Dubai


Apply for a DFM Investor Number (NIN)
Open a tradings account
Start trading in Dubai
Apply for a DFM Investor Number (NIN)

There are three ways you can apply for a  DFM Investor Number (NIN) one is through Dubai Financial Market (DFM) app and the second is via Dubai CSD (Dubai Central Securities Depository LLC) and the last one is with the help of a licensed broker.

To apply for a DFM Investor Number through the Dubai Financial Market (DFM) app, you can conveniently start the process by downloading the official DFM mobile application on your smartphone or tablet. Once you have the app, simply navigate to the account registration section, where you’ll be guided through the application steps.

Take a moment to provide your personal details, such as your name, contact information, and identification information within the app. Remember to double-check the accuracy and completeness of the information you provide. To proceed, you’ll also need to upload the necessary identification documents, such as a copy of your passport or Emirates ID, as instructed by the app. It’s essential to ensure that the documents are clear and legible before submission.

After you’ve completed the application, it’s time to sit back and let the DFM review and process your submission. While waiting for their response, be assured that the DFM is working diligently to assess your application. Once approved, you’ll receive your unique DFM Investor Number. Use this number to open a trading account with a registered brokerage firm.

To apply for a DFM Investor Number through Dubai CSD, the process involves a few simple steps. Firstly, get in touch with Dubai Central Securities Depository (Dubai CSD) and gather the necessary identification documents. This typically includes a valid passport or Emirates ID. Complete the application form provided by Dubai CSD, ensuring that all the required information is accurately filled in. Once the form is completed, submit it to Dubai CSD as per their instructions. Afterward, you’ll need to patiently wait for Dubai CSD to process your application. During this time, they will review the provided information and conduct the necessary checks. 


Once your application is approved, Dubai CSD will assign you a unique DFM Investor Number. This number will serve as your identifier for trading on the Dubai Financial Market (DFM). With your DFM Investor Number, you can proceed to open a trading account with a registered brokerage firm.

If you prefer a more convenient approach, you can consider registering with a licensed brokerage firm that will handle the application process on your behalf. It’s important to choose a brokerage firm from the list of licensed firms approved by DFM to ensure a reliable and trustworthy service. The application procedure and required documents remain the same as mentioned earlier.

Your chosen broker will provide you with the official NIN request form, which you will need to complete and submit through them. This option allows the brokerage firm to assist you throughout the process, ensuring that all necessary steps are taken care of efficiently and accurately. By opting for this option, you can rely on the expertise of professionals to guide you through the registration process smoothly.

Open a Trading Account in Dubai​

Once you have obtained your NIN, the next step is to choose a licensed broker. Before making a decision, it’s important to do your research. Take the time to evaluate the broker’s reputation, track record, and the services they offer. Make sure they align with your investment goals and provide a secure and dependable trading platform. By making an informed choice, you can establish a strong foundation for your trading experience in Dubai’s financial market.

What factors should be considered when selecting the appropriate broker for trading in Dubai?

When choosing a broker for trading in Dubai, it’s essential to consider key criteria such as fee structure, trading features, Fee structure, execution speed, and List of services. By assessing these factors, you can make an informed decision and find a broker that aligns with your trading style and requirements, ensuring a solid foundation for your trading endeavors in Dubai.

Tech facilities

It is vital to consider the range of services and advanced technology offerings brokers offer cutting-edge technology, including user-friendly trading platforms, reliable order execution systems, real-time market data, and secure online account access. Considering whether they provide mobile trading apps for convenient on-the-go trading is beneficial.

List of services

Brokers offer access to financial markets like stocks, bonds, commodities, and forex. They provide research tools, educational resources, and market analysis to aid informed trading decisions. Additional services include automated trading, portfolio management, and access to IPOs, catering to diverse investment needs.

Fee structure

Evaluate the fee structure of brokers, including commissions, spreads, and any additional charges. Compare the costs associated with different types of trades and consider factors such as account maintenance fees, inactivity fees, and withdrawal fees. Striking a balance between competitive fees and quality services is important.

trading in duabi

Start trading in Dubai

Once you have successfully opened an account with a regulated broker, it’s time to embark on your trading journey. Stay updated with real-time data by registering for data updates from DFM. You can access pricing information through the DFM app or DFM eServices portal, covering instruments listed on both DFM and Nasdaq Dubai.

Once enrolled, you will have a variety of trading options available to you. This allows you to execute trades, make investment decisions, and take advantage of opportunities that suit your trading preferences and objectives. Get ready to dive into the world of trading with confidence and explore the exciting possibilities that lie ahead.

DFM and Nasdaq Dubai provide a wide range of 116 listed equities for you to explore and trade. On DFM’s website, you can find detailed market profiles and pricing data for each equity, offering valuable information such as news updates, top shareholders, daily summaries, historical data, financial reports, general meeting details, key corporate actions, and trading summaries. By accessing this information, you can make informed decisions and stay informed about the dynamic world of equity trading in Dubai.

DFM offers seasoned investors the option to trade derivatives or futures, providing an opportunity to diversify portfolios and protect against price changes. With partnerships with eight derivative trading members, three market makers, and four technology partners, DFM ensures a robust trading environment. Investors can purchase contracts with expiry dates of 1, 2, or 3 months, allowing for flexibility in trading strategies. This feature enables investors to explore derivative trading as a means to enhance their investment approach and effectively manage market volatility.

DFM allows you to trade Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs), which are trading instruments backed by underlying assets and commodities. The advantages of trading ETFs include low management fees, lower minimum investment requirements compared to mutual funds, and excellent liquidity. This makes ETFs a cost-effective and accessible choice for investors looking to diversify their portfolios and take advantage of market opportunities.

Fixed-income securities(Bonds) and Sharia-compliant bonds(Sukuk)  are great investment options if you’re looking for a safe and low-risk return. Typically, you can expect returns between 3% and 7% from Sukuk and bonds. Currently, DFM has listed 175 Sukuk or Islamic bonds and 97 conventional bonds, offering a wide range of choices for investors. It’s an opportunity to diversify your investment portfolio and explore options that suit your risk tolerance and financial objectives.

Track Your UAE Stock Portfolio Effectively During Trading

Stay on top of your UAE stock portfolio with the DFM app. Here’s what it offers:

  • Real-time market updates: Stay informed about market performance.
  • Up-to-date pricing information: Access current prices for various financial instruments.
  • Seamless portfolio management: View and track your stock portfolio easily.
  • Streamlined trading with eServices: Convenient access to online services.
  • Comprehensive instrument details: Explore equity, futures, ETFs, bonds, and Sukuk information.
  • Personalized watchlists: Create and manage custom watchlists.
  • Valuable company insights: Gain information about companies.


In Conclusion, Dubai’s trade market is a global leader, offering a dynamic and supportive ecosystem for investors. With its strong economy, pro-business environment, favorable taxation, and diverse workforce, Dubai is an attractive destination for anyone, and the availability of different trade market indexes reflects the city’s commitment to excellence and innovation By following this step-by-step process you can start your trading journey now and start treading in Dubai.

If you want to the best business idea in Dubai check out our blog Top 10 Business Ideas for Dubai in 2023

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