Dubai Chamber urges credit reforms in UAE

DUBAI - Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry has called for urgent reforms to the UAE credit market saying, "The reforms are essential for its regional and international standing". In an economic bulletin entitled, "UAE Credit Market Information and Legal Rights", the chamber outlined the credit areas where the UAE performs weakly relative to the world's top ten performers such as Singapore. The bulletin used data from 'Doing Business 2008' of the World Bank Group.

By (By Mark T. Townsend)

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Published: Wed 13 Aug 2008, 11:23 PM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 11:53 AM

Doing Business 2008 constructs indicators of the legal rights of borrowers and lenders and the sharing of credit information. The set of indicators describes how well collateral and bankruptcy laws facilitate lending. The indicators also measure the coverage, scope, quality and accessibility of credit information available through public and private credit registries. The chamber stated that where good quality credit information is available and legal rights are stronger, more credit is extended.

The bulletin called for wide ranging and specific reforms of 15 credit areas including the distribution of credit data on both firms and individuals, distribution of both positive and negative credit data, distribution of credit information from retailers, trade creditors, utility companies and financial institutions, distribution of historical credit information that date back more than 2 years, and the distribution of data on all loans below 1per cent of income per capita.

The chamber added that it is currently conducting a study on the supply and demand side of the Dubai credit market. It added that the study would make "concrete reform recommendations to improve UAE position/rank in the credit market:".

Analysts stated that accurate credit information would assist banks and financial intuitions to make quality-lending decisions and prevent 'credit black spots' particularly in an economy with a high real-estate exposure. Some UAE bankers have recently expressed concern that some lenders are placing profits before responsible lending particularly to UAE Nationals.

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