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New UAE law: 11 things all bank account holders should know
Accounting 2022-01-05

The UAE’s revised Commercial Transaction Law came into effect earlier this week

Changes to UAE’s Commercial Transaction Law – which include narrowing the scope for criminalisation of returned or “bounced” cheques due to insufficient funds – came into effect in the UAE earlier this week.

Here are 11 things all bank account holders should know:

  1. Banks operating in the UAE can no longer stop payment against a cheque even when the cheque drawer’s account does not have enough funds to cover the full amount. Instead, they can make partial payments. For example, if the cheque value was Dh100,000 and the account had Dh75,000, the bank would have to pay Dh70,000.
  2. The cheque’s bearer may accept partial payment of the cheque’s value and postpone the remainder, if that is deemed to be in her/his interest, or if the drawer’s financial condition is poor, or if it is in his interest to save whatever can be saved from the debt.
  3. While accepting a partial payment against a cheque, the bearer may request the drawee bank to mark the partial payment on the back of the cheque and the bank should issue a certificate along with it confirming the partial payment.
  4. The bank should keep a copy of the partially-paid cheque and a copy of the partial payment certificate issued by it.
  5. According to law, the cheque bearer has the legal recourse for the remainder of the original cheque as an executive document after partial payment to go ahead with a civil case against the drawer if the drawer refuses or has no capacity to pay.
  6. If the cheque issuer asks the bank before the date of encashment of the cheque not to encash the cheque, or withdraws the entire balance of the account before the cheque is presented to the bank, or deliberately writes a cheque in a way that prevents it from being encashed, the punishment for such cases can be imprisonment between six months to two years and fine for a minimum of 10 per cent of the cheque amount and not less than Dh5,000.
  7. Punishment for the forgery of cheques shall be imprisonment for a minimum of one year and fine between Dh20,000 and Dh100,000. The same punishment will apply to anyone using a forged cheque or obtaining money by using a fake cheque under a different name or if using a cheque linked to fraud.
  8. The court has the right to order a ban on the convicted person from practicing any commercial or occupational activity for up to three years if the crime occurred in the capacity of practicing a business. In case of repetition, imprisonment for minimum one year and a fine between Dh50,000 to Dh100,000.
  9. The cheque issuer can request the bank to stop payment in only two circumstances. One, if the cheque bearer loses a cheque, and it’s obtained by someone using fraudulent means; two, in case of a bankruptcy declaration.
  10. If the issuance of the bounced cheque is in the name of, or for the benefit of, a corporate person, the person in charge of actual administration shall not be liable to punishment unless it is evident that such person has been aware of the crime or that such person has committed the crime for the benefit of himself or third parties.
  11. Where the liability of the natural person is not evident, the legal person shall be subject to a penalty of no less than twice the legally applicable penalty for this crime and no more than five times of it.
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Expo 2020 Dubai: 5 new bus services to transport visitors directly to mega event from Ajman
EXPO 2020 2021-12-22

The Ajman Public Transport Authority (APTA) will be providing transportation services to visitors to Expo 2020 Dubai from the main station in Ajman city.

It will provide five bus trips to residents from the Emirate wishing to visit the mega event as part of its efforts to offer the best services to the public during the ongoing Expo.

The move comes amid increasing demand for services, as the APTA seeks to support the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) by providing three public transport buses to transport visitors from Ajman to the site of the event.

The buses are characterised by a high level of safety, luxury and quality, and are equipped with comfortable seats and high safety standards.

Engineer Sami Ali Al Jallaf, Executive Director of the Public Transport and Licensing Agency at the Ajman Transport Authority, revealed that the authority is keen to provide logistical support to partners to enhance the standards of mass transit and ensuring business continuity.

APTA seeks to provide buses of high quality to ensure they are comfort during the trip, as the authority has made sure that bus transportation is the preferred option for visitors to the Expo 2020.

The opening of the central station coincides with the launch of the Expo 2020 Dubai activities and is considered within the framework of the continuous endeavour of APTA to develop services provided to the public.

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Expo 2020 Dubai offer: Get unlimited access with Dh95 festive pass
Expo 2020 2021-11-27

With the launch of Expo 2020 Dubai's festive pass, visitors can gain unlimited access to some of the most anticipated events of the year - just for Dh95.

The cultural events in store for adults and children include the UAE's Golden Jubilee celebrations, Christmas festivities and performances by major stars, namely Grammy Award winners Alicia Keys and AR Rahman.

In addition, country pavilions will also host their own holiday activities, the Expo News Service said on Saturday.


Golden Jubilee celebrations

On December 2, the UAE will celebrate 50 years since its founding by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan in 1971.

Expo will commemorate the occasion from December 1 to 4 with ‘The Journey of the 50’ - a blend of human performance and theatrics, showcasing Al Wasl dome’s unique capabilities in a never-before-seen way with a cast of more than 200.

Festivities will include the ‘Journey of a Thread’ show - a staging of Emirati craftsmanship that dives into the heart of the culture - plus fireworks displays and a concert by Emirati singing star Eida Al Menhali.


Visitors can also experience ‘Al Azi’, in which an Arabic poet leads a chorus that ‘answers’ his call, and a 30-minute musical showcase by another renowned Emirati singer, Fatma Zahrat Al Ain.


Expo 2020 wonderland


To mark the season, the greatest global gathering in history will undergo a magical winter transformation as decorations adorn Al Wasl, the Welcome Plazas, Jubilee Stage, Dubai Millennium Amphitheatre, Al Forsan Park and all concourse areas.

Ring in the festive season at Al Wasl Plaza’s spectacular Christmas tree lighting and enjoy festive trains, twinkling street lights, dazzling fireworks and a dash of snow.

From Santa Claus and his 3D camels to giant snow globes, carol concerts and flying pianos, the site will come alive with holiday cheer.


Live Performances

Expo 2020 will host more than 100 musical shows and concerts featuring an extraordinary range of stars, including multi-award-winning artist Alicia Keys live at the Al Wasl stage on December 10, and a special event on December 19 featuring musician AR Rahman.

Late Nights at Expo will feature a special festive line-up for three nights from December 23 to 25, with a range of artists from across the globe, while Christmas Day will see entertainment from Filipina singing sensation Lea Salonga, British artist Joe Stilgoe and the London Community Gospel Choir.


Family Fun


Little ones can write a letter to Santa Claus and meet the man himself, enjoy special showings of holiday movies, such as Home Alone (December 23), Miracle on 34th Street (December 24) and Elf (December 25) on the Jubilee stage. Nightly shows and spectacular seasonal projections will also take place at Al Wasl Plaza from December 20 to 29 (excluding December 27).

No seasonal celebration is complete without a festive fair, and Expo 2020’s market at Surreal - the Expo 2020 waterfall - not only has kiosks selling traditional treats and gifts from across the globe, but is packed with entertainment and activities for all ages, including DJs, baking sessions and an action-filled winter camp with face-painting, magicians, jugglers and crafts.



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Central Bank Issues new guidance on AML/CFT for exchange houses
AML/CFT 2021-11-18

The Central Bank of the UAE issued on Wednesday new guidance on anti-money laundering and combatting the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) for licenced exchange houses (LEH).

The guidance, which came into effect immediately, requires LEH to demonstrate compliance with its requirements within one month.

The new regulation for LEH is subsequent to recent guidance issued by the CBUAE on transaction monitoring and sanctions screening for its licensed financial institutions (LFIs).

The latest regulation will assist LEH’s understanding of risks and effective implementation of their statutory AML/CFT obligations, and takes Financial Action Task Force (FATF) standards into account, the CBUAE said in a statement.

“The CBUAE takes its regulatory and supervisory duties extremely seriously. We want to ensure that all licensed exchange houses in the UAE understand their AML/CFT responsibilities, have adequate programmes to identify and mitigate AML/CFT risks in their operations, and comply fully with their statutory obligations,” said Governor of the CBUAE Khaled Mohamed Balama.

As per the guidelines, LEH must maintain an effective AML/CFT programme designed to prevent misuse of their business to facilitate money laundering or terrorist financing.

The Apex bank said LEH must take a risk-based AML/CFT approach by conducting “a regular risk assessment process that covers all commensurate risks to their exchange business, including customer, products and services, delivery channel, new technologies, geographic, counterparty and illicit finance risks.”


The regulator said the risk assessment findings should inform the programme’s comprehensive policies, procedures, internal controls and employee training to mitigate risks effectively.

The exchange houses sector is weighted as highly important in terms of risk and materiality in the UAE, which is increased notably by their exposure to cash and cross-border transactions.

Other essential components of the AML/CFT programme include dedicated compliance function, strong customer due diligence, continuous transaction monitoring and full compliance with the UAE’s requirements on “Targeted Financial Sanctions” and “Suspicious Transaction Reporting.”

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Dubai Expo 2020: Free tickets for nannies, housekeepers
Expo 2020 Dubai 2021-10-11

Nannies and housekeepers will be allowed free entry to Expo 2020, the organisers of the mega fair have confirmed.

The Expo media office said they can enter 'as many times as they like’ by producing a copy of their residence visa.

“To take advantage of this fantastic offer, all they need to do is present a copy of their residency and show their job title at the Expo Ticket booth,” Expo 2020 said in a statement to Khaleej Times.

A single-entry ticket to the fair costs Dh95 while a six-month season pass costs Dh495. A multi-entry pass is available for Dh195 — offering unrestricted entry for 30 consecutive days.

Expo 2020 tickets include access to all pavilions, events and live performances, providing limitless opportunities to enjoy Expo’s dynamic, diverse and ever-changing entertainment programme, with up to 60 live events each day, from world-class music, dance and art to insightful talks and colourful national day celebrations.

Other categories that can enjoy free access to Expo 2020 include visitors under 18, senior citizens above 60 years old, students and people of determination.


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