New Dubai Endowment Law details were discussed at a press conference by the Awqaf and Minors Affairs Foundation (AMAF) which was held in conjunction with the Mohammad Bin Rashid Global Centre for Endowment Consultancy (MBRGCEC). Under the law, which received Royal approval last month, private individuals, companies and organisations will be allowed to establish their own endowments, whether these are for educational, health, cultural, environmental, arts or sport reasons. Until now, the general practice has been for potential donors to make contributions AMAF in order to support endowment projects managed completely by AMAF, the Dubai endowment regulator. AMAF currently manage over 2.7 billion AED in assets, which include endowments. Under the new law they are mandated to receive all necessary documentation from endowment bodies who wish to be formally registered. AMAF will carry out a careful review of the documentation and issue waqf licenses to the applicants within 10 working days and then submit the licences to MBRGCEC. The MBRGCEC will issue a Dubai Endowment Sign to the body, which will enable them to operate as full-fledged endowment institutions and carry out their work. The Endowment Law Dubai Law No. 14/2017 has come into force. Endowment institutions will be licensed by AMAF, but will enjoy independence in terms of the management of their financial affairs within the framework of the licensing rules and regulations and the prevailing governance system of endowment institutions. AMAF will also monitor these institutions to ensure they achieve their goals and remain committed to this law and preceding laws pertaining to endowments. AMAF, as a regulator, will monitor the revenue and expenditure of endowments, and ensure the money is spent according to the declared and agreed purpose of the endowment. However, it will be possible to legally change the purpose and nature of an endowment over time by following specific procedures. This new law is expected to enhance the MBRGCEC’s role in granting the Dubai Endowment Sign to institutions which are engaged in community work based on the waqf concept. The law mandates institutions which hold the Dubai Endowment Sign to be granted special privileges in areas including government procurements, setting up and selecting contracts. Entrepreneurs are being invited to secure a licence for their waqf institutions so that they can implement community programmes in various fields.