Relief will be given to those in the trade and investment sector
The UAE updated the country’s bankruptcy law to help businesses deal with financial crises in “emergency situations”. On Wednesday, the Cabinet approved the changes to help businesses and individuals in the trade and investment sector, state news agency Wam reported.
The new amendments will help individuals and businesses if they cannot repay their debt or keep up with financial payments because of pandemics, natural disasters or wars.
The changes will help cash-strapped debtors avoid declaring bankruptcy and, instead, opt for reaching a settlement with their creditors and negotiate debt restructuring.
It will also make sure the creditors do not take a hit.
Earlier, businesses that were unable to pay their creditors had to file for bankruptcy proceedings immediately. The new regulations give a lifeline of up to 12 months during which debtors can renegotiate their debt, consolidate their business, sell assets, or secure additional funding to clear their loans and payments.
They have to simply file an application in court and reach a settlement with their creditors. The court services will be free of charge to reduce the burden on the debtors.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, chaired the Cabinet meeting.
Since the Covid-19 outbreak began, the UAE government has launched economic stimulus packages worth billions of dirhams to help businesses and citizens.
The laws governing insolvencies of UAE companies were overhauled in 2016 when the country introduced the Bankruptcy Law. It covers all UAE companies, except those in the Dubai International Financial Centre or Abu Dhabi Global Market.
The law helped in the early restructuring of indebtedness for distressed companies. It offered support and, in certain cases, temporary financial relief to financially distressed businesses.
It will also help in removing the stigma surrounding business failure and encourage more investors to grow their businesses.
Source: The National News
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The amendments, which will come into force in 2022, include modification of certain rules dealing with “bounced cheques and the issuance of cheques without value”.
The UAE Cabinet on Monday approved a landmark decree amending certain provisions of the existing “commercial transactions law” to allow drawers and payees of bounced cheques additional opportunities at reconciliation.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and the Ruler of Dubai, chaired the Cabinet meeting that redefined crimes involving cheques, a long-awaited reform that will go a long way in boosting business confidence.
The amendments, which will come into force in 2022, include modification of certain rules dealing with “bounced cheques and the issuance of cheques without value”. They seek to provide “fast, advanced and civil mechanisms” to recover the required payments.
As per the decree, bounced cheques will be “an executive document to be executed directly by an appropriate judge in court”.
The new decree, proposing a recourse to civil mechanisms, aims primarily to avoid criminal lawsuits and facilitate alternative procedures. It encourages reconciliation and stipulate payment of the value of the bounced cheques as the main condition for the abatement of a criminal lawsuit.
According to senior legal experts, this means cases of bounced cheques may not be deemed a criminal offense from 2022 when the new decree-law on ‘“Federal Law on Commercial Transactions’” will be enforced. However, they said such an assumption would require further clarification to be confirmed.
The latest amendments will ensure several mechanisms and options to ensure the collection of payments through cheques in a simple and fast way. One such method is that obliging banks would be asked to partially pay the amount after deducting it from the available fund in the account of the issuer.
“Though the existing legislations entitle the banks to effect partial payment of a cheque based on the available amount in the account, most banks do not implement it. The amendments will certainly help both the issuer of the cheque as well as its beneficiary”KK Sara Chandra Bose, partner of Dar Al Abdallah Advocates & Legal Consultants.
Ashish Mehta, the founder managing partner of Ashish Mehta & Associates, said the intention behind the new rules appears to ensure drawers and payees of bounced cheques additional opportunities at reconciliation before a criminal action gets initiated by the payee.
“This will instill increased confidence in the business community, and pave the way for greater transparency and cooperation in commercial transactions. This will also help during bankruptcy.”
Mehta said as per the initial reports the decree is set to take effect in the year 2022, and “therefore one must still wait for the full details to be released.”.
Bose said the amendments would encourage reconciliation, making civil action preferable over criminal action on bounced cheques. “The existing law on bounced cheques calling for criminal actions is not at all a business-friendly legislation, in my opinion. The amendment with respect to the joint account holders is not very clear.”
“At present, if a joint account holder dies or is incapacitated, the joint account shall be frozen immediately on the death of a joint account holder and the funds lying in the account can be released only to the legal heirs of the deceased person by a court order,”.Bose
Mehta said the business-savvy visionary leadership of the UAE has come up once again with an innovative idea to further improve the ease of doing business. “This announcement will enhance business confidence and is good news when the businesses require support during times of Covid-19.”
The amendments also feature the introduction of several ancillary penalties, including cancelling the cheque books of convicted people and preventing them from obtaining new cheque books for up to five years, as well as halting their professional or commercial activities.
“Additional penalties for offenders, barring banks and financial institutions, will also be introduced, including fines, suspension of licenses to conduct economic activities for six months, and the revocation or dissolution of the licenses of those who repeat violations.”
The amendments also deal with the rules on opening joint accounts. If one of the joint account holders dies or loses legal control, the other joint account holders must notify the bank within 10 days from the date of death or disqualification, and the bank must, from the date of notification, limit the ability to withdraw from the joint account within a party’s share of the account balance on the day of death or loss of eligibility.
Source: Khaleej Times
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Dubai Economy – DED and Zoho
A global technology company “Zoho” with a wide portfolio of products, today signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Dubai Econo to make enterprise-level technology available and affordable for all businesses in Dubai and help them in their digital transformation journey.
The MoU, signed by Omar Bushahab, CEO, the Business Registration and Licensing sector (BRL) of Dubai Economy, and Ali Shabdar, Regional Director of MEA, Zoho Corp, is a step towards making Dubai a trailblazer in digitalisation and global role model in driving a competitive knowledge economy, as targeted by the National Agenda 2021.
Free access for Local Businesses to Zoho one
Through this agreement, local businesses registered with Dubai Economy can gain access to Zoho One, a unified cloud-based suite of over 45 applications, which seamlessly connects diverse functions of a business, for free for one year. Most businesses that either have legacy software or work with multiple cloud apps, struggle with data silos, multi-vendor contracts, integration hassles and escalating costs. With Zoho One, businesses can run their sales, marketing, productivity, collaboration, HR management, finance and other functions on a single platform. This significantly lowers the entry barrier that many startups and SMEs face when adopting enterprise technology. The cloud-based apps enable businesses to run from anywhere and take advantage of technologies such as Artificial Intelligence to expedite their growth.
Omar Bushahab said the cooperation with Zoho is in line with the vision and directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, which strengthens the city’s position at the forefront of digital transformation in the region, as the Emirate embraces the largest global technology companies and developers of smart solutions, as well as implements projects and initiatives that confirm its leadership in this field.
The digital vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum is the strong ground for promoting the digital industry sector and apps in the UAE, in general, and Dubai, in particular.
“We are delighted to sign the agreement with Zoho, which would provide solutions that facilitate easy procedures, saves time, effort and cost, and promote the happiness and satisfaction of the business community in Dubai and enhance their competitiveness. These solutions are value-added services, within an innovative environment that seeks to invest future technologies in driving the well-being and prosperity of societies through digital smart,”Bushahab
“We are excited about joining hands with Dubai Economy in their efforts towards scripting a digital future in Dubai. At Zoho, we staunchly believe that overall economic development stems out of an interconnected network of strong, self-reliant clusters. With that in mind, we are always committed towards supporting local economies in their growth journey. Having our MEA regional headquarters in Dubai and an ever-growing partner network in the country, allows us to serve our customers here better. With Zoho One, businesses can find all the necessary tools to run their business online in a single place. As we have built every app on the same technology stack, they work together seamlessly, and when the apps run together, business runs better.”Sridhar Vembu, CEO and Co-founder, Zoho Corp
- Wallet Credits for Zoho One: Businesses registered with Dubai Economy can benefit from $1800 per business in wallet credits that can be used to subscribe to Zoho One. This financial sponsorship endeavors to boost the adoption of digital tools that can help businesses catapult their growth.
- Discount on Renewal: After their wallet credits expire, businesses can avail a one-time discount of 5% on renewal of their subscription or to buy any Zoho product.
- Focus on Privacy: Zoho does not allow any third-party trackers to monitor usage behavior and never sells any data to ad-based companies. Because Zoho has built its entire technology stack, the company is able to offer the most secure experience to its users without any compromise on data privacy. Users have the assurance that their data is confidential and protected, and only users themselves maintain ownership of that data.
Zoho One Highlights:
Zoho One is an all-in-one solution, which is customizable, extendable and integratable, making it the ‘Operating System for Business’. It breaks down departmental silos and helps drive smarter decision-making. It can be customized with powerful service options and it grows to fit each business’ needs and goals, leading to a shorter time-to-value and overall success. Its feature highlights include:
- Customer Experience: Zoho’s unified customer experience platform helps businesses deliver an exceptional experience to every customer across all stages of their lifecycle and convert them into brand advocates. They can monitor website visitors, manage sales (CRM), send email campaigns, track social media engagement, provide customer support, send surveys, manage projects, run analytics and more.
- Finance and Accounting: Zoho’s accounting software (Books) is VAT-compliant and FTA-approved. It simplifies accounting and enables businesses to file their taxes from within the software. Businesses can also manage their inventory, invoices, expenses and subscriptions.
- Productivity and Collaboration: Employees can collaborate through email, instant messaging, social intranet or online meetings. They can also co-create and collaborate on documents using Zoho’s online office suite and file management system.
- HR Management: Zoho offers HR management software and application tracking system to help businesses manage their employees and create a happier workforce.
- Custom Solutions: With Zoho’s low-code development platform, Zoho Creator, businesses can create custom solutions for their specific needs. Those who want to use apps from other vendors can easily integrate them using the integration platform (Flow).
- Business Intelligence and AI: Zoho One offers advanced analytics and AI functionalities that can pull information from across various apps to provide intelligent insights for quick decision-making.
To avail the offer, which is valid for new Zoho customers, please visit www.zoho.com/ded and use the promo code DED2020.
Source: Dubai Economy
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The move provides remote workers, the opportunity to relocate on an annual basis to one of the world’s leading tourism and business destinations.
Dubai has launched a unique programme that enables overseas remote working professionals to live in the emirate while continuing to serve their employers in their home country.
The move provides remote workers – and their families – the opportunity to relocate on an annual basis to one of the world’s leading tourism and business destinations and enjoy a safe and high-quality lifestyle underpinned by a strong digital infrastructure that provides seamless connectivity.
Applicants should have a passport with a minimum six-month validity, health insurance with UAE coverage, proof of employment from current employer with a one-year contract validity and a minimum salary of $5,000 per month. The applicant should also produce a pay slip and three preceding months’ bank statements.
If the applicant is a company owner, proof of the ownership of company for one year or more, with an average monthly income of $5,000 per month, and three preceding months’ bank statements should be produced to be eligible for the programme.
Through the programme, applicants can obtain all services in Dubai, including telecoms, utilities, and schooling, enabling them to experience the distinctive lifestyle enjoyed by people of over 200 nationalities. Applicants will also benefit from Dubai’s zero income tax for individuals.
It costs $287 (Approximately Dh1,054) plus medical insurance with valid UAE coverage and processing fee per person.
Dubai, and the UAE, have been recognised for setting a global model for dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic. The emirate, which reopened itself to international tourists on July 7, has implemented robust safety and hygiene protocols that enabled the reopening of most sectors and destination offerings across the city, including hotels, restaurants, attractions, water and theme parks, beaches, shopping malls and schools and universities.
World Travel & Tourism Council
The World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) awarded Dubai the Safe Travels Stamp in acknowledgement of its efforts to ensure the highest standards of hygiene and Covid-19 precautionary measures. The emirate also introduced the ‘Dubai Assured’ stamp to certify that establishments have implemented all public health protocols for the prevention and management of Covid-19.
“The global pandemic has changed how we live and work. As multinationals and leading start-ups across the world accelerate their rates of digital adoption, the need to be physically present to fulfil professional responsibilities has been redefined,” said Helal Saeed Almarri, Director-General, Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing. “People continue to prioritise their health, wellbeing and ability to ensure a positive work-life balance. Dubai is uniquely positioned to offer a safe, dynamic lifestyle opportunity to these digitally savvy workers and their families while they continue to work remotely, whether it is for a couple of months or an entire year.”
Dubai Global Ranking
Dubai’s No 1 global ranking in e-infrastructure in the latest Digital Quality of Life (DQL) survey validates the emirate’s exceptional digital infrastructure. The new programme also boosts the emirate’s value proposition for start-ups, entrepreneurs and SMEs.
Sami Al Qamzi, Director-General of Dubai Economy, said: “The virtual working programme further strengthens Dubai’s status as a global business hub and demonstrates its progressive thinking and sustained competitiveness in today’s rapidly changing global landscape.
Dubai was recently listed as the second best among 60 global cities for remote working jobs by the CEOWORLD magazine. With its advanced infrastructure, global connectivity and pro-business ecosystem, the virtual working programme gives Dubai a significant opportunity to enhance business practices and maximize growth.”
- Passport with minimum 6-month validity
- Health insurance with UAE coverage validity
- Proof of employment from current employer with a one-year contract validity, last month’s pay slip and 3 preceding months’ bank statements
- $5,000 monthly salary
- If the applicant is a company owner, proof of ownership for one year or more, with an average monthly income of $5,000, and 3 preceding months’ bank statements
Source: Khaleej times
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