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Wed 20 Jan 2010 07:36 AM

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UAE eyes new laws to boost foreign investment

Justice minister says new competitiveness, bankruptcy draft laws in final phases.

The UAE government will soon enact important economic laws to attract more foreign investment into the country, the minister of justice told the Federal National Council (FNC), it was reported on Wednesday.

Dr Hadif Al Dhaheri, Minister of Justice, said "many economic laws requested by the Emirates Competitiveness Council" were being drawn up relating to competitiveness, bankruptcy and company laws.

The draft laws are in their final phases and will be referred to the FNC for discussion before they are approved, Emirates Business reported.

"The UAE still needs to modify many laws, especially economic ones, to bring them in line with the progress achieved over the past several years and attract more foreign investments," the paper quoted him as saying.

He also said the ministry would expand the network of specialised courts, including economic and commercial courts.

"We are very interested in economic and commercial cases. The ministry is training judges with more than 20 years of experience in UAE courts to deal with economic and commercial cases. The judges have become conversant with such cases, whether they are financial, real estate or investment cases," he added.

Arabian Business: why we're going behind a paywall

Sayed Ali 10 years ago

There's one full proof way that Dubai could end all it's financial problems. This is similar to what they are able to do such buying up football clubs, US ports etc...Open up the emirate to allow 100% ownership to foreigners, as well as a companies. Make this rule of having a local sponsor etc... a thing of the past. It's understood why this wouldn't be desirable, however, the pros must certainly outweigh the negatives, also they could limit the sectors where this would be allowed such as Housing / Types of business. To put it simply, at the moment, if i wanted to start an engineering consultancy for example, i would need a local sponsor / part owner. What I'm suggesting is that, this condition be dispensed with. If I want to start my own company and I'm not a UAE National, allow me to anyway without any sponsor. If I have the money and the capacity, allow me to.

Joe 10 years ago

Mr Sayed Ali's comment, posted on Wednesday 20 January 2010, make sense. UAE Nationals can go abroad and buy property or businesses freely - Ports,football clubs etc. Why then can not people fromother countries can not do the same here? It is a bit one sided. OK, there are certain sensitive areas or categories. The Govt could easily eastblish guidelines defining these areas not open to foreigners. At least that will not be at par with other countries, but something.

tsuribaka 10 years ago

It is not attractive for foreign companies to invest to UAE, because 51% of share must be retained by UAE nationals. Although UAE government does not impose corporate tax, 51% UAE ownership means same as 51% tax. Many companies escape this requirement and pretend complying this condition by some arrangement of UAE nationals, however, it is not healthy and not the intention of the UAE corporate law. If UAE goverment wants to diversify their economy, it's better to open the market and liberise the economy as soon as possible. CHANGE !

Dr Hankin 8 years ago

In order to improve its image Dubai need to deal fairly & justly with its present investors, left in the lurch by incompetent developers. Yet investors cannot have access to justice, seeing the Dubai arbitration panel need to be paid in full in order to address the case: that is totally unreasonable and is a huge stumbling block for most. If at least they aloowed solicitors to veto cases decided of cases with merits, or start some sort of insurance, paid for by the master developers profits or from "our escrow accounts' profits", anyway it is just to start the procedure, at the end of which the offending party will have to pay all expenses as well as compensation. Requiring the complainant to fork out the whole costs (for both party before they even look at the case) can be construde as a willful obstacle to prevent access to justice for individuals in contravention of basic human rights. All this leaves a bad taste in investors mouths, loosing all good will.