United Arab Emirates—cross border banking and finance guide
Produced in partnership with Amir Ahmad and Umbreen Meenai of Pinsent Masons
United Arab Emirates—cross border banking and finance guide

The following Banking & Finance guidance note Produced in partnership with Amir Ahmad and Umbreen Meenai of Pinsent Masons provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • United Arab Emirates—cross border banking and finance guide
  • Loan market and developments
  • Lending
  • Security and guarantees (Mainland UAE)
  • Enforcement
  • Intercreditor issues
  • Governing law and disputes

At the outset, it is pertinent to note that when dealing with a particular Emirate in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the laws and regulations prescribed at both the Federal level and at the relevant Emirate level need to be considered. Further, in the UAE, there are several free zones and each free zone may have its own set of governing laws and regulations, Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) being the most important one. Therefore, prior to any entry into dealings associated with a particular free zone, specific advice should be sought.

Loan market and developments

Please provide a brief overview of the current state of the loan markets in your jurisdiction and any significant recent market developments.

The UAE banking sector is presently experiencing a rise in the rate of non-performing loans. The lower oil prices are having an impact on the level of liquidity and tightening of margins. Despite the comparatively low oil prices, the UAE's economy remains resilient. Islamic syndicated loans are doing especially well amid a tightening supply of cash to lend as demand outstrips appetites for traditional bank loans, bonds or sukuks.

Please provide a brief overview of forthcoming changes to the law or other matters that may affect the loan markets or the responses to the questions below.

The new UAE