UAE mulls modifying foreign ownership laws

30 Nov 2010

(MENAFN) The UAE is to relax foreign ownership laws for a number of professional service companies, according to media reports.

The UAE government is planning to liberalize current regulations in relation to the trading of services and goods by professional service, such as accountancy, legal and consultancy firms, said Juma Al Kait, the executive director of foreign trade affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Trade.

While Al Kait did not specifically outline which professional services would be covered by the changes resulting from the DDA, it is believed to include accountants, lawyers, engineers, architects, designers and other consultants, the report said.

Under current UAE laws, foreigners can only own a maximum of 49 percent of businesses, with an Emirati sponsor holding the remaining 51 percent. The exceptions are the free zones, which allow 100 percent ownership.

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