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ADGM – Just A New Free Zone?

ADGM – Just A New Free Zone?

Submitted by • December 28, 2015

Those familiar with the United Arab Emirates, and Dubai in particular, have heard of the many free trade zones that dot the economic landscape there. For the uninitiated, free trade zones in the UAE are special economic zones that offer, among other incentives, 100% ownership to foreign investors, and a guaranteed tax-free environment. Dubai has over 30 of them, clusters of companies with similar economic activities (Dubai Media City, Dubai Multi Commodities Centre and the like) and the other emirates have a few each. Abu Dhabi, which is the capital of the UAE, has been relatively slow in adopting the free zone approach, with a few free zones like twofour54 (media related) and Masdar (clean technologies) appearing in the last decade. So when they announced their new financial free zone – the Abu Dhabi Global Market, or ADGM, it was relatively low key compared to how the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) launched a hundred miles away a decade ago.

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