Abu Dhabi’s Securities Exchange has announced it will reduce the total commissions for the trading activities on all deals which happen from this month. It is part of its ADX One strategy which is aimed at doubling the market value of the companies listed in the market over the next three years. This is the second time the Exchange has reduced commissions on transactions over the last two years to improve market liquidity.
Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince has announced a raft of judicial reforms including a new Civil Transactions Law are on the way. A new Personal Status Law, Penal Code for Discretionary Sanctions and Law of Evidence will also be introduced.
Once the draft laws are finalised, they will be referred to the Cabinet and other relevant bodies to consider. Once the Cabinet and other relevant bodies have reviewed them, they will be submitted to the Shoura Council to consider. They will be drafted in line with Sharia Law and the Kingdom’s international and regional treaty obligations.
They will help clarify the lines of accountability and ensure the consistency of legal references to limit discrepancies in court rulings. Discrepancies in court rulings have led to a lack of clarity in the rules governing incidents and practices as well as prolonging cases which are not based on established legal provisions and creating a lack of a clear legal framework for individuals and businesses.
Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund has announced its intention to plans to establish a major airline company in the Kingdom. It will compete with State-owned Saudi Arabian Airlines and other major aviation companies in the region. The Fund has made significant progress in establishing an aviation company which will operate both international and domestic flights. The aim is offer consumers more choice and increase the contribution of the aviation sector to the country’s GDP.
Qatar: Transport and Communications Ministry has announced it has published the guidelines to Qatar Law No. 13/2016 (the Personal Data Privacy Protection Law)
The Compliance and Data Protection Department of Qatar’s Transport and Communications Ministry has announced it has published the guidelines to Qatar Law No. 13/2016 (the Personal Data Privacy Protection Law). They provide a set of guidelines, controls, assistance tools, checklists and templates for regulated entities covered by the Law to support compliance with it. They also include guidance for individuals to be more aware of their rights and responsibilities under the Law. Regulated entities should refer to them and adapt according to their individual role either as data processor or data controller, without prejudice to the Law to avoid liability. They were issued on Data Privacy Day. They are aimed at helping individuals, regulated entities and stakeholders understand their respective responsibilities, rights and practices under the Law. They have also been introduced as part of efforts to implement the Law.
Oman’s Commerce, Industry and Investment Promotion Ministry has confirmed GCC investors do not need a residence card. It follows rumours on social media that GCC citizens need a lease contract and a municipal license to obtain a residence card. The Ministry confirmed GCC citizens are treated the same as Omani citizens. They are working with the Royal Oman Police Directorate-General of Civil Status. The Ministry added they do not ask GCC investors to obtain residence cards to get a commercial registration or facilitate the establishment of a business in the Sultanate.
Kuwait’s General Authority of Manpower has announced the workflow which should be followed by an employer if a domestic worker leaves to go to an unknown body or destination. The Authority said the employer should record a notice of absence of the employee in one of the service centres of the Interior Ministry. They should also visit the Department responsible for organising domestic worker recruitment in the Authority and file a complaint against paying for the tickets if the worker was found. The employer can also request compensation for their failure to complete the period. The Authority said if the worker doesn’t complete the first six months of recruitment the office has to refund the full amount.
The Public Facilities and Environment Committee of Bahrain’s Parliament has approved a proposal to reduce the fines imposed by the Building Organisation Law by amending Articles 23 and 24 of it. The Committee referred the proposal to the Council to consider. The aim of the amendment is to reduce the fines imposed on those who build a building or work without obtaining the license from the Municipality. The maximum fine will be 500 Dinars instead of between 1,000 and 10.000 Dinars.
Abu Dhabi’s Court of Cassation has ruled funds cannot be taken without informing the customer first. Their ruling amends a ruling which saw one bank in the country and two telecommunication companies fined. They were fined 20,000 AED for making a customer pay fake costs and deducting them from their account without their permission. The ruling was amended to exempt the telecommunications companies from the fine and ask the bank to pay 4,000 AED for withholding the money without informing the customers.
UAE: Authorities have approved amendments to Cabinet Decision No. 2/1972 (the Implementing Regulations to the Federal Nationality and Passports Law, Federal Law No. 17/1972)
The UAE authorities have approved amendments to Cabinet Decision No. 2/1972 (the Implementing Regulations to the Federal Nationality and Passports Law, Federal Law No. 17/1972) to allow investors, professionals, those with special talents and their families to acquire Emirati nationality and passport in certain circumstances.
Among others, investors, doctors, specialists, inventors, scientists, talents, intellectuals, artists and their spouses and children will be able to benefit from the changes. They will be able to keep their existing nationality.
Emirati citizenship will be able to be obtained through nominations from Rulers and Crown Princes as well as Courts, Executive Councils and the Cabinet for Federal entity nominations. Investors have to own property in the UAE while doctors and specialists have to be specialists in a unique scientific discipline or other scientific principles which are in heavy demand in the UAE.
The applicant also has to have acknowledged scientific contributions, studies and research of scientific value and practical experience of at least 10 years. In addition, they have to have membership in a reputable organisation in their specialist area.
Scientists have to be active researchers in a university or research centre or in the private sector, with practical experience of at least 10 years in the same field. They should also have contributions in the scientific field such as winning a prestigious scientific award or securing substantial funding for their research during the past ten years. In addition, they will have to obtain a recommendation letter from recognised scientific institutions in the UAE.
Inventors who want to acquire Emirati citizenship have to obtain one or more patents which are approved by the UAE Economy Ministry or any other reputable international body as well as a recommendation letter from the Economy Ministry.
Individuals with creative talents like intellectuals and artists have to be pioneers in the culture and art fields and have won at least one international award. A recommendation letter from related Government entities will also be required.
Those who qualify will also have to swear an oath of allegiance, commit to abide by the Emirati laws and officially informing the respective Government agency if acquiring or forfeiting any other citizenship is required.
Citizens are able to establish or own commercial entities and properties. They are also entitled to any other benefits which are granted by federal authorities after Cabinet or local authority approval. If the conditions are violated, citizenship can be withdrawn. The aim is to attract international talent to the country.
Following a public consultation on proposed amendments, Saudi Arabia’s Capital Market Authority have approved amendments to the Market Conduct Regulations. They will come into force on their published date. They are aimed at boosting protections for securities investors against unfair or unsound practices which involve fraud, deceit, or manipulation. They are also aimed at developing the capital market’s legal and regulatory framework and promote its stability, develop procedures to minimise risks associated with securities transactions and boost confidence in the capital market. Among other amendments, the provisions regulating the prohibition of acts or practices involving manipulation or deceit will be developed. This will be done by clarifying that the scope of these acts or practices will include promoting the purchase of a security for the purpose of selling or promoting the sale of a security for the purpose of purchasing it. The amendments will also develop the provisions regulating the prohibition of insider trading and disclosure of inside information for the purpose of including front running trades.