Dubai mulls doubling rental contract in free zones to 50 years


free zones, Dubai free zones, trade

Dubai - Free zones are a major contributor to Dubai's economy.

By Waheed Abbas

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Published: Wed 23 Oct 2019, 7:48 PM

Dubai Free Zones Council (DFZ Council) is considering a host of measures including doubling the number of years of rental contracts to attract more companies as well as increase the emirate's competitiveness and make it easier to more business friendly.
The council members discussed the draft law proposal related to systemising rental agreements in free zones in coordination with the Dubai Land Department and free zone authorities, with the aim of providing a larger pool of real estate options for companies. It was also suggested during the meeting to extend the long-term rental duration from the current 25 years to 50 years.
In May 2019, Dubai Free Zone Council had announced plans to launch of "One Free Zone Passport", which allows companies licensed in one free zone to also operate in other free zones in Dubai without the need for another licence under "Dubai 10X" project.
As part of Free Zone 10X programme, the Council members also discussed establishing a financial market that provides companies registered in free zones with funding through IPO listings. A study is being conducted for legislative and logistical requirements to implement this project.
Among other initiatives, it reviewed the launch of geo-economic map of the emirate. The launch is on track as per the 2030 plan.
"The initiatives of the DFZ Council, such as the geo-economic map, bring added value to the local economy. Developments on the economic front transcend geographical borders and support the implementation of innovative projects in line with the priorities articulated in the recent Letter of the New Season from His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai," said Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, chairman of the DFZ Council.
Free zones are a major contributor to Dubai's economy. Dubai's non-oil foreign trade rose to Dh676 billion in the first half of 2019 with free zones accounting for Dh287 billion, an increase of 12 per cent.
The Council said it aims to attract 400 international companies into Dubai across diverse sector by cashing in on its four characteristics - a center of excellence for research and development, a gateway into the Middle East, Africa, and Asia, a hub for entrepreneurship and advanced technology, and an ideal environment for business.
In the Council's previous meeting held in May 2019, it was agreed to meet with representatives of Dubai Land Department and The Supreme Legislation Committee to discuss the possibility of exempting free zone companies from registering leased property at the Department.

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