Permanent Establishment in The UAE Corporate Tax

The United Arab Emirates has positioned itself as a dynamic hub for global business, captivating enterprises worldwide. Its enticing tax structure, characterized by nominal corporate taxes, holds substantial appeal for international businesses. Amid the burgeoning economic activities, one crucial concept takes center stage in corporate taxation: The Permanent Establishment (PE). In this blog, we will unravel the intricacies of permanent establishment under the UAE corporate tax law.

What is a Permanent Establishment?

A Permanent Establishment (PE) is the linchpin that determines the “taxable presence” of an entity in a specific country. A PE comes into existence when a foreign entity establishes a fixed business location, such as an office, within a given country. Grasping the concept of PE is indispensable for businesses due to its paramount role in the realm of taxation. A PE subjects the foreign entity to taxation on the income generated through that establishment in the host country. This typically aligns with the country’s corporate tax laws. And any pertinent tax treaties between the home country of the foreign entity and the country housing the PE.

What Constitutes a Permanent Establishment in the UAE’s Corporate Tax Law?

Article 14 under Federal-Decree Law No. 47 of 2022, the corporate tax law, serves as an exhaustive guide on the permanent establishment. The PE concept is pivotal in determining the tax liability of a non-resident entity in the country. A PE can take shape in various scenarios:

a) Fixed or Permanent Place of Business:

When a non-resident entity maintains a fixed place in the UAE where it conducts its business or part of it. This includes management offices, branches, factories, workshops, real estate, and installations related to natural resource exploration.

b) Authority to Conduct Business:

If an individual regularly conducts business activities on behalf of a non-resident entity in the UAE, they may be deemed to have authority to conduct business.

c) As Specified by the Cabinet:

The UAE Cabinet may define a PE based on the Minister’s recommendation in certain circumstances.

d) Other Scenarios:

If the same non-resident entity or its related party carries out a cohesive business operation at a place in the UAE that is not of a preparatory or auxiliary nature, it may qualify as a PE.

It’s crucial to note that the mere presence of a natural person in the UAE, under temporary and exceptional situations, does not create a PE for a non-resident entity. Additionally, if the activities of the natural person are not integral to the core income-generating activities of the non-resident entity, and if the entity doesn’t generate income from the UAE, a PE may not be established.

Understanding these rules is imperative for businesses and entities operating in the UAE to ensure compliance with corporate tax regulations.


The United Arab Emirates stands as an inspiring haven for international business. Its tax-friendly environment, characterized by low corporate taxes, entices companies globally. Amidst the vibrant economic landscape, the concept of a Permanent Establishment emerges as a cornerstone in corporate taxation. In this blog, we have demystified what constitutes a PE and underscored its pivotal importance. Whether you are an established corporation or an entrepreneur, comprehending the notion of a PE is your compass to navigate the UAE’s tax framework effectively. This understanding is paramount for ensuring compliance and making informed financial decisions.

Abacus Tax & Accounting

At Abacus Tax & Accounting, we grasp the intricacies of navigating international tax laws. Our adept experts can guide you through the nuances of Permanent Establishment and corporate taxation in the UAE. Our dedicated team is here to offer comprehensive accounting, tax planning, and advisory services tailored to your unique needs. Allow us to assist you in making sound financial decisions while ensuring compliance and maximizing your business potential in the UAE. Reach out to us today to embark on a journey towards financial prosperity and peace of mind.

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