From 1 June, non-Emiratis will be able to own 100% of businesses based in the UAE, the ministry of finance confirmed on 19 May.
The change was announced in November 2020 and had been expected to come into force the following month. It is not clear what caused the delay.
The news was announced on the UAE government’s Twitter account in Arabic.
A translation reads: “Allowing full ownership of companies by investors and entrepreneurs to start from 1 June 2021.
“The minister of economy confirms that the decision is a new step that reflects the importance that the UAE government attaches to supporting the economy and enhancing its preparedness for the future.”
Foreigners are currently limited to 49% ownership and are required to have a local or UAE-owned company act as an agent.
The company board also needed to comprise mostly UAE nationals and be chaired by an Emirati.
The amendments to the 2015 commercial company law do not extend to all sectors, however.
The UAE cabinet retains the right to exclude certain companies, and those either wholly-owned by federal or local governments or their subsidiaries also fall outside the scope of the changes.