Weekly Spotlight: Licensing and Promoting Investment Funds Agreement Reached in the UAE Between Multiple Regulators

This week the spotlight is on regulatory developments in the UAE, where the country’s Securities and Commodities Authority, Dubai’s Financial Services Authority and Abu Dhabi Global Market’s Financial Services Regulatory Authority have announced they have finalised an agreement on the licensing of domestic funds by each authority for promotion across the UAE. The regulators have agreed to establish common rules to implement the agreement which amongst other things introduces passporting ‘mutual recognition’ for promoting and supervising investment funds and encourages foreign firms licensed in financial free zones in other countries to operate in the UAE.

In addition, the regulators have agreed a common legislative framework in their respective jurisdictions will be introduced to enable them to facilitate regulatory coordination between them in licensing domestic funds once the legislation has been approved.

They have also confirmed funds, licensed in line with the agreement and the licensing regulations, may be promoted in or from the financial free zones in the UAE, in line with the provisions of the agreement and the licensing regulations. Under the agreement, a notification and registration facility will be established by each regulator to facilitate the promotion and sale of domestic funds, set up in the UAE, in either the Dubai International Financial Centre or Abu Dhabi Global Market, to potential investors based anywhere in the UAE and under a single licence. The agreement was signed by the Securities and Commodities Authority’s CEO, the Dubai Financial Services Authority’s Chief Executive and Abu Dhabi Global Market’s Financial Services Regulatory Authority’s CEO.

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