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Wed 28 May 2014 03:28 PM

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Exclusive: Iran sanctions seminar shut down in Dubai

Event had been planned since March and was due to be attended by 226 delegates

Exclusive: Iran sanctions seminar shut down in Dubai
The seminar and workshops, entitled “Iran, Economic Sanctions and What’s Next?”, was due to take place at the Address Dubai Marina.

A seminar focusing on economic opportunities in Iran, which was due to be attended by 226 delegates from around the world, was shut down on Wednesday just hours before the one-day event was due to get underway.

The seminar and workshops, entitled “Iran, Economic Sanctions and What’s Next?”, aimed to look at potential opportunities in Iran as a result of the easing of sanctions and improved relations between the West and the Tehran government.

Originally scheduled to take place at the Al Murooj Rotana hotel in Downtown Dubai, organisers, who have been staging similar events in Dubai for nearly 10 years, were informed by the hotel the night before the event that officials from the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) had contacted the hotel and were told the event could not go ahead as the correct permits were not in place.

The Address Dubai Marina agreed to host the seminar, but on the morning of the event DTCM officials again said it could not go ahead and it was to be permanently cancelled. The source claimed the Address Dubai Marina also was issued with a fine.

About 226 delegates from around the world had arrived in Dubai for the event, which was launched in March, and some of the high profile keynote speakers were to include Dr Nasser Saidi, former chief economist of the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) and Trita Parsi, founder and president of the National Iranian American Council.

DTCM officials did not give an explanation to organisers why the event was not allowed to go ahead. A DTCM spokesperson declined to comment when contacted by Arabian Business.

Robert 5 years ago

I think the organisers and all those who booked to attend should get a full refund of all the costs they incurred from the DTCM

ama 5 years ago

This is no good for Dubai expo such sham & embarrassment 226 delegates from around the world had arrived in Dubai & not allowed ! Tourism chiefs in Dubai on Sunday revealed their new target - to make the emirate the most visited city in the world.

leo50 5 years ago

well I don't suppose you could have dreamed of a more apt headline; "Iran sanctions seminar shut down in Dubai."

Most unlike DTCM to be involved in such late timings and wonder where the pressure came from?

Bill 5 years ago

This is unlike Dubai. There is more to it than DTCM taking such a drastic step, which is an embarassment for the Dubai government. Bad for Dubai's reputation, when they are working towards a successful Dubai Expo.

Hope the organisers had insured the event and will be able to pay damages to 226 delegates and speakers. If not, the organisers stand to lose financially and their reputation will be at stake.

Muhammad 5 years ago

It’s clear that the DTCM has only stopped this event when the organizers failed to obtain the correct permit as per the instructions.
It’s also obvious that there was no pressure, or any kind of late involvement from the DTCM. Accordingly, The organizers stand accountable to pay for all the damages at this level.
Dubai will be the most visited city in the world, time is the best judge. City rules must be obeyed.

sia 5 years ago

@Muhammad you have a sense of humor don't you? :)

KTN 5 years ago

What an outrage! Random rules imposed arbitrarily. Isn't it obvious that there are ulterior motives here? How can a business hope to operate under a regime where the rules are imposed willy nilly.

MT3 5 years ago

He'll need it when someone emails the Zannier Group to find out if it is their view he is expounding. As he is such an absolute stickler for the rules, let's hope he's acquainted himself with his firm's policy on media statements criticising other companies' activities.

JP5 5 years ago


My company organises conferences in Dubai and have never known of any permits to be required. Does anyone know what permits they may have been alluding to?

Ali 5 years ago

Why are you all so naive? The pressure came from the US government for god sake. They are the last people, officially, who want business ties with Iran to return. Since when does the DTCM get involved in approving conferences.