UAE government moves to 4.5-day working week; private sector free to choose
The UAE announced that it is set to introduce a four and a half-day working week for all government employees from 1 January 2022, with Friday afternoon, Saturday and Sunday constituting the ‘new weekend’.
Bahrain announces major new economic growth and fiscal balance plan
The government of Bahrain announced a new national economic growth and fiscal balance plan on 31 October, which pushes a zero-deficit target back from 2022 to 2024 and increases the rate of VAT from 5% to 10% The multi-year plan is designed to support the post-COVID 19 recovery and boost the long-term competitiveness of the Bahraini economy.
Sovereign can assist with new ‘Saudisation’ rules
The Saudi Vision 2030 initiative is designed to boost the Kingdom’s economy by diversifying beyond oil and sets out commitments to other sectors including manufacturing, education and tourism. A key pillar of Vision 2030 is the ‘Saudisation’ programme, which is focused on creating and sustaining jobs for Saudi National citizens.
UAE introduces raft of amendments to accelerate economic transition
To coincide with celebrations to mark the Golden Jubilee of the creation of the UAE, the federal government introduced amendments across more than 40 existing laws on 27 November to further enhance the openness and competitiveness of the business environment and to accelerate the UAE’s transition towards a new economic model.
Dubai expands membership of the Free Zones Council
The government of Dubai has restructured the Dubai Free Zones Council (DFZC) via a new Decree No. 48 of 2021, which was approved by Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum on 6 December and will take effect on 1 January 2022. The move is to recognise the increased importance of the free zones in general and certain free zones in particular.
Saudia records over 500 flights in a day in post-pandemic recovery
Saudi Arabian national airline Saudia set a record for the number of daily flights since the beginning of the pandemic. The airline operated 507 flights on 4 December during the peak of operational movements.
Dubai’s Crown Prince seeks ‘strong partnerships’ to promote corporate social responsibility
Dubai’s Executive Council adopted new policies aimed at encouraging corporate social responsibility among private sector companies at a meeting held at Expo 2020 Dubai on 6 December. Council chairman Crown Prince Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum called for “strong partnerships” between the public and private sectors.
Saudi ‘mega-projects’ are help attract multinational regional HQs
Riyadh is seeing a surge in business activity from international companies setting up regional headquarters (RHQs) in the Saudi capital under the Kingdom’s push to become a regional commercial hub.
Dubai posts 69% jump in the issue of business licences
Dubai’s Department of Economy & Tourism issued 55,194 new business licences over the first 10 months of 2021, a 69% increase over the 32,626 licences issued in the same period in 2020, according to a report released in November.