UAE financial system 'is liberal but regulated'

24/03/2010 - Dubai Investment News
UAE financial system 'is liberal but regulated'

Posted by Neil King

The UAE has a liberal financial system which encourages investment and business growth, but its regulatory framework is also strong enough to withstand exploitation, a government official has said.

Obaid Humaid Al Tayer, minister of state for financial affairs, told the Federal National Council that as the UAE moves forward with economic diversification, it has created a liberal economy in which there are no restrictions on the movement of funds used for trade, investment or personal consumption, Gulf News reported.

However, Mr Al Tayer added that as a major financial centre, the UAE has put stringent measures in place to protect legitimate interests and prevent criminal activity.

"The regulatory infrastructure always seeks to prevent the criminal exploitation of the financial system through money laundering and financing terrorism," he said.

In 2002 the UAE passed an anti-money laundering law to impose restrictions on transfers and fix the maximum penalty for money laundering to seven years in jail and a Dh10 million fine, Gulf News reported.

Positive business news was reported in the UAE this week when Dubai Pearl Exchange recorded a 30 per cent increase in imports last year despite the difficult global economic climate.