Dubai Sees e-Commerce Boom in 2020

Dubai Sees e-Commerce Boom in 2020

Total number of 'DED Trader' licences jump 132% to 5,799 in 2020

The total number of licenses issued by DED Trader licences that proactively supports the growth of e-Commerce in the UAE during 2020 reached 5,799, an increase of 132% compared to 2019, when 2,500 licences were issued.

The numbers show that ‘DED Trader’ has encouraged a growing number of consumers and businesses to go online.

The DED Trader licence was launched by the Business Registration & Licensing (BRL) sector of Dubai Economy (DED) to license freelancers at their place of residence in Dubai and enable start-ups to conduct business activities online and across social networking accounts.

It has seen overwhelming response with 9,949 licences issued since its launch in 2017 till end of 2020.

Of these, 57% (5,704) have been issued to women.

This reflects Dubai Economy’s focus on promoting e-commerce platforms that facilitate commercial activities and the competitiveness of Dubai’s economy.

The report issued by the BRL sector showed that ‘Marketing Services Via Social Media’ topped the list of activities of licences until the end of 2020 followed by ‘Perfumes & Cosmetics Trading’; ‘Portal’; ‘Sweets & Candies Preparing’; ‘Cafeteria’; ‘Marketing Management’; ‘Social Media Applications Development & Management’; ‘Readymade Garments Trading’ and ‘Ladies' Garments Trading’.

EZDubai e-Commerce Zone 20% Operational: Dubai South

The total number of DED Trader licence groups is 86.

Through DED Trader licence, Dubai Economy seeks to regulate and enhance the ease of doing business electronically, find a platform that supports and develops trade as well as connect customers with traders.

The licensee cannot open a shop/store but can avail of three visas if the ownership is 100% Emirati and legal liability falls under the licence holder.

The DED Trader licence is issued electronically by visiting and following simple steps to receive the licence electronically.

During 2020, Dubai Economy partnered with, the region’s leading homegrown digital marketplace, to connect local startups with customers across the region through its Mahali digital store.

Mahali by is a programme designed to offer Emirati startups with digital business support and expertise, enabling them to grow their businesses online.

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Dubai Economy has also partnered with MyFatoorah to facilitate e-payments for DED Trader Licence holder transactions; talabat to display and sell food items through its platform, and with “Akshaak” to display and sell products of DED Trader licence holders online for free.

The benefits of getting a DED Trader licence include getting Dubai Chamber membership for commercial activities, benefitting from bank facilities; getting Customs Client Code, which facilitates import and export via

The licensee can also avail temporary employment services; participation in exhibitions & conferences and training workshops; displaying of products in consumer points of sale and provision of work spaces.

Last year, the BRL sector organised several virtual awareness workshops on how to conduct businesses and other related subjects, to a great number of freelancers and startups.

Read More: GCC e-Commerce Sector Set to See Massive Growth by 2025

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