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Mohammed bin Rashid sets up Support Fund

posted on 23/07/2009: 799 views

Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE H. H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has issued in his capacity as Ruler of Dubai law no 24 of 2009 establishing the Dubai Financial Support Fund (Support Fund).

The Support Fund will be accountable to Dubai's Supreme Fiscal Committee (SFC) and its establishment is being supported by the Department of Finance of the Emirate of Dubai.

The Support Fund is an independent legal entity which is being established with the specific purpose of providing financial support and liquidity to Government and Government-Related Entities ('GREs') undertaking projects of strategic importance within Dubai that contribute towards the overall economic development of the Emirate.

The Support Fund is authorised to invest in, hold and manage debt instruments on behalf of the Government of Dubai, to collect loan repayments and it may also re-invest these revenues. Furthermore, the Fund will provide loans and credit facilities on a commercial basis to Government and GREs which meet SFC-approved criteria in accordance with the said law. As with all other commercial loans, the Support Fund will not disclose the names of the recipient entities. Each entity will decide whether or not to release details of its support.

The Support Fund can issue financial instruments, including bonds and sukuks, inside and outside the Emirate on behalf of the Government of Dubai, invest in commercial projects, establish investment funds and manage institutions and companies in order to provide liquidity for strategic projects of entities applying for funds. The Fund can also acquire partial or whole stakes in institutions and companies that are deemed to be in line with the overall strategic objectives of establishing it.

The Support Fund's financial resources come from the first US$10bn tranche of the US$20bn bond programme launched earlier this year allocated to help it achieve its goals, revenues generated from issuing loans and investing its capital and assets revenues generated from the issuing bills, bonds and sukuks in addition to other resources provided by the Government to help the Fund achieve its goals.

Entities that have already received funds from the first tranche from the Government will have their loans transferred to the Support Fund.

The Support Fund's Board will be responsible for establishing general policy for the Fund and its subsidiaries and defining its projects and programmes, obtaining loans and financing, establishing institutions, companies, commercial projects and subsidiaries and buying and selling assets and equities. It will also be responsible for recommending criteria for applicants requesting loans and proposing suitable applicants in the form of strategic projects or companies and recommending them to SFC. The criteria depend on the strategic importance of the projects and applicant entities and their role in sustaining the Emirate's economy on the long term.

It will also adopt financial, administrative and technical regulations and submit them to the SFC for approval.

The SFC was established in October 2007 and has overall responsibility for overseeing Dubai's fiscal policies. The SFC will review and approve the loan criteria needed to grant the financial support to government entities, strategic projects and GRE's in the Emirate. It will also appraise applications recommended by the Fund's Board, and determine the size and terms of each loan and the nature of the related securities and guarantees.

The SFC is chaired by H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum and has the following Board Members: H.E Mohammed Al Shaibani, Deputy Chairman of the SFC and Chief Executive Officer of Investment Corporation of Dubai; H.E Abdulrahman Al Saleh, Director General of the Dubai Department of Finance; Abdulaziz Al Muhairi, Managing Director of Investment Corporation of Dubai; and HE Dr Omar Bin Sulaiman, Governor of Dubai International Financial Centre.

The Support Fund's fiscal year starts on 1 January and ends on 31 December. The first fiscal year began upon the issuance of the decree and will end on 31 December 2010. The Fund will be subject to external audit and an auditing firm will be appointed by the SFC. - Emirates News Agency, WAM


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