Abu Dhabi waives Dh246m in penalties to support private companies


Abu Dhabi waives Dh246m in penalties to support private companies

31 Mar 2020

Abu Dhabi on Tuesday waived Dh246 million in penalties to support private companies, in line with the stimulus package announced by the government earlier this month.

The decision by Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED) will benefit more than 72,200 private companies including small and medium enterprises in the commercial and industrial sectors. It will help reduce the cost of doing business, according to a tweet by Abu Dhabi Media office on Tuesday and enable the private sector “to adjust swiftly to global economic challenges."

The waived fines are related to various economic violations including a delay in renewal of licenses, practicing additional economic activities not covered by an existing license, improper storage of goods in unsafe areas, among others.

"We are keen on maintaining our continuous efforts to launch leading initiatives aimed at stimulating the business environment that can support both local and foreign investors in their move towards the further expansion and development of their businesses," Mohammed Ali Al Shorafa, chairman of ADDED said.

The latest measures follow a stimulus package rolled out by the Abu Dhabi government on March 16 to boost the economy and support businesses in the emirate.

The 16-point agenda unveiled by Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, allocates Dh5 billion to subsidising water and electricity for citizens and commercial and industrial activities. It also reduces electricity connection fees for start-ups until the end of this year and exempts all commercial and industrial activities from Tawtheeq fees in 2020.

The government has also allocated Dh3bn for the SME credit guarantee scheme, dedicated Dh1bn to establish a market maker fund to stabilise stock markets and issued directives to settle all approved government payables and invoices within 15 working days.

The state has exempted start-ups from performance guarantees for projects up to Dh50m, reduced industrial land leasing fees by 25 per cent on new contracts, suspended real estate registration fees for the remainder of this year and waived current commercial and industrial penalties.

Other reprieves include waiving annual registration fees for commercial vehicles, exempting all vehicles from traffic tariffs and road tolls this year and suspending tourism and municipality fees in 2020.

"The Ghadan 21 initiatives implemented last year have expanded the ways we support companies in Abu Dhabi. And today, the Abu Dhabi government is fast-tracking new initiatives that tackle current economic challenges and accelerate development at the same time,” Sheikh Khalid bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, member of the Abu Dhabi executive council and chairman of the Abu Dhabi executive office said on March 16.

The UAE government also increased its stimulus package to Dh126bn to support the economy and help small businesses earlier this month.


Source: The National