Generally, a free trade zone, or FTZ for short is an exclusive economic zone. Goods are manufactured, handled, stored, imported, and exported in this specific area without the need to pay any customs tax or maybe, just light customs tax. Similarly, RAK Digital Assets Oasis is also a free zone.
But there is a key difference. While common FTZs involve physical goods, the aforementioned free zone focuses on non-physical items like digital cryptocurrencies and assets. Is there any other similar free zone? No, the said free zone, which came into existence in late March 2023 is the very first of its kind.
RAK is short for Ras Al Khaimah, which is an emirate in the United Arab Emirates or UAE. The free zone is called RAK Digital Assets Oasis. Subject to the newly formed Law Number 2 of 2023 and initiated by the emirate’s ruler, His Highness Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, it’s an independent government body in terms of legislation, finance, and administration. It’s also linked to Ras Al Khaimah’s recently created Department of the Future.
Types of Businesses That Can Join the Free Zone
It has the prestigious tag as the world’s very first free zone, which caters exclusively to virtual assets, crypto assets,s and digital asset businesses. Bitcoins, stablecoins, non-fungible tokens or NFTs, metaverse, utility tokens, and virtual asset wallets are some examples of such businesses. DApps and Decentralized Autonomous Organizations or DAOs are other good examples.
Who Can Join as a Member of This Free Zone?
Though the applications were first opened during the second quarter of 2023, it’s still ongoing. Applications to join the free zone is not limited to companies but are open to individuals too. Apart from licenses that are given to traditional companies, there are also licenses for other types of companies. Even start-ups have a golden chance to set up their businesses and grow here.
Freelancers are not left out either – they can gain permits for practicing their businesses. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a developer, entrepreneur, innovator, or investor, there’s a golden opportunity to be part of the free zone and its future progress.
Benefits of Being Part of the Free Zone
Digital assets, crypto assets, and virtual assets markets are swiftly expanding and evolving. So, there’s no denying that there are ample investment, development, and other business opportunities in these markets. But what are the benefits of being part of the free zone?
It has a strategic location in addition to a wholly supportive environment and top-notch infrastructure. You have the benefit of top-tier service providers and advisors. There is also the marvelous chance to mingle with other like-minded individuals and companies who are in the same zone.
All these things give you an edge over your competitors. What’s more, the free zone takes pride in being wholly compliant with both international and local regulations. This ensures that your business is diligently following the law. So, you don’t have to worry about whether your business is in compliance with the required regulations.
It also inspires trust in your customers and stakeholders. Another benefit of joining the said free zone is in terms of advancing entrepreneurship and innovation. It has formed various partnerships with the foremost research institutions and leading universities. The purpose is so that businesses can have access to their advanced research and development amenities.
Also, you save a great deal of money on your operational costs and other expenditures – there’s zero personal tax and corporate tax. Foreigners enjoy full ownership of their respective businesses. What’s more, you are allowed to make a 100% recovery of your capital. When it comes to profit, you enjoy it completely.
For individuals who are looking for chances to invest and earn money, there are various investment opportunities like Security Token Offerings or STOs and ICOs or Initial Coin Offerings. With the free zone ensuring that businesses fully comply with international and local regulations, individual investors can rest assured that their investments are secure.
Beneficial Partnership Between the Free Zone and the HBAR Foundation
In July 2023, the free zone signed a partnership with the HBAR Foundation. This allows the free zone members to enjoy the full benefits of the Hedera ecosystem. Hedera is a business-grade and most commonly used public network.
The HBAR Foundation also provides grants for start-ups, which use Hedera blockchain technology. Even companies that are using the same technology and are hoping to expand can apply for grants.
The Free Zone and the HBAR Foundation are working together closely. The primary intention is to make the free zone as the world’s key hub for Web3-related businesses. Combined with its various benefits like zero tax, joining the free zone is a golden opportunity that should not be missed by companies that are in the digital assets market.