The Chairman of the Committee for Foreign Affairs, Defence and National Security of Bahrain’s Council of Representatives has announced a draft law to increase the penalties for social media misuse is under consideration. It is part of Government attempts to clampdown on this misuse. Among other things, social media misuse covers defaming someone, insulting someone or spreading rumours.
Abu Dhabi’s Airports Free Zone has announced it has launched an online One Stop Shop to make it easier for prospective businesses to set up in the Zone. Once businesses are registered, they will be able to use the online shop to view their company’s license, lease and employee and financial details. In addition, they will be able to use a company dashboard which will provide access to employment visa-related requests, letter and certificate requests, employment cards and access passes, registration services and licensing services.
Oman’s Capital Market Authority has announced it has issued new Takeover and Acquisition Regulations. Oman Decision No. 2/2019 will apply to public joint stock companies listed on the Muscat Securities Market (MSM). It has been published in the Official Gazette.
The rapporteur of the Interior and Defence Committee of Kuwait’s Parliament has announced a draft law, which if approved, will grant citizenship to up to 4,000 people. It has been submitted to Parliament to consider and it is hoped it will be approved before the end of Parliament’s current term. If approved, those looking to benefit from it will have to submit all of the necessary documents and records before they can benefit from the Law.
Bahrain’s Real Estate Regulatory Authority has launched a model contract for use between real estate sellers and brokers. The CEO of the Authority said it is not mandatory to use the model contract and is intended for use as a unified model for mediation contracts, with more items to be added in line with the relevant regulations. The model was prepared following consultation with the relevant parties including real estate brokers and sellers. The Authority is going to prepare more models and guidelines in the coming months, covering other types of real estate transactions.
Bahrain’s Shoura Council have approved four laws including a new Providing Cloud Computing Services to Foreign Parties Law. It is aimed at international cloud providers who have shown an interest in establishing in the Kingdom following the launch of Amazon Web Services. The Council also approved a Letters and Electronic Transactions Law which will establish a new framework for associated banking and financing services.
Kuwait’s National Assembly has approved a new Insurance Law in the country at first reading. The changes would be the first to the legislation since 1981. MPs are still debating whether the sector should be regulated by the Central Bank or the Commerce Ministry but have called for a bespoke regulator not to b established. While Kuwait was the first GCC country to regulate its insurance sector they are the last to amend the legislation to reflect sectorial developments.
Saudi Arabia’s Centre for Special Residency Permits is currently working on drafting the Implementing Regulations to the Special Residency Permits Law. The Regulations will include the conditions and procedures for applying for these permits. The Centre will announce details of the Implementing Regulations and how applications from applicants who are already in Saudi Arabia or from abroad will be handled. The aim of the law is to diversify the Saudi economy.
The Abu Dhabi Global Market Courts and Ras al Khaimah Courts have announced they have signed a cooperation agreement to facilitate the reciprocal enforcement of their judgments, decisions and orders and arbitral awards. The agreement was signed for the Global Market Courts by their Chief Justice, Lord Hope of Craighead KT. It was signed for the Ras al Khaimah Courts by their Chairman, HE Ahmed Mohammed Al-Khattari.
Saudi Arabia’s Shoura Council has approved a draft special residency permits law and has submitted it to the Government to consider. The aim of the law is to provide various benefits to those who hold special residency permits including the right to recruit foreign worker, own property and transport vehicles and obtain visitor permits for family members. There are two types of special residency permit. The first is unlimited while the other is only available for one year but can then be renewed. It is similar to the Green Card system in the US and if approved will mean applicants will not have to have a Saudi sponsor or employer. To be eligible, applicants must have a valid passport with a credit report, a health report and no criminal record.