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Wed 23 May 2012 06:05 PM

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UAE eyes revamp of financial regulation

Gov't committee proposes that central bank, bourse regulator be given joint duties

UAE eyes revamp of financial regulation
(Photo for illustrative purposes only)

A UAE government committee chaired by the finance minister has proposed that the central bank and bourse regulator be given joint duties to regulate the financial industry and safeguard it from global crises.

The commitee also recommended that a comprehensive financial law be considered by the cabinet along with amendments to legislation governing financial companies and banks, Bloomberg reported, citing the official WAM news agency.

The panel proposed that the Securities and Commodities Authority be renamed the Emirates Financial Services Authority according to the agency, which gave the name in Arabic.

The recommendations are meant to help “function as a safety valve protecting the sector
from any financial risk that may threaten the country's banking and
financial system".

The new body will have a
major role in making key decisions that control the financial sector in
the country, WAM added.

Last month, it was reported that the board of directors of the UAE’s central bank called for “major amendments” to be made to draft financial laws in the Gulf state.

The laws “should reflect the independence of the central bank,” the bank said, without providing details of any suggested amendments.

Last week, the International Monetary Fund said government-related companies in the UAE have about $30bn of debt due this year.

The companies also have a “significant amount of debt” due in 2014 and 2015, the IMF said in a statement.

Its executive directors said they "welcomed the consolidation plans in Dubai, which will help improve the emirate’s debt sustainability in the face of contingent liabilities related to government-related entities and the still weak real estate market".

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