Allen & Overy has advised on the landmark creation of the Abu Dhabi Global Market, Abu Dhabi’s first Financial Free Zone, which aims to be a leading global financial market and a major regional finance centre.
The Abu Dhabi Global Market has been designed to form a strategic link between financial markets across the globe, taking advantage of the time-zone benefits offered by its geographic location.
Its primary purpose will be to fill a gap with respect to the regional provision of financial services by focusing greater attention on commodities trading, storage and transport, derivatives trading, custody, settlement, clearing and depositary services, foreign exchange, market-making and retail financial services.
It is expected to attract numerous providers of financial services who wish to establish a presence in the UAE.
The Abu Dhabi Global Market has been granted the authority to self-legislate and self-regulate. It will be exempt from the application of UAE Federal and Abu Dhabi civil and commercial laws (but not penal laws) and will have its own independent set of regulations and rules and courts.
Allen & Overy acted as sole legal counsel on the project and advised on all legal aspects of the establishment of the Abu Dhabi Global Market, including drafting all relevant legislation and assisting with the development of the operational infrastructure.
ADS Holding acted as lead and strategic adviser on the project.
The Allen & Overy team was led by Ibrahim Mubaydeen, managing partner of Allen & Overy’s Abu Dhabi office, and Abu Dhabi-based corporate partner Khalid Garousha. London-based partner Bob Penn also advised on the regulatory aspects of the Abu Dhabi Global Market. This core partner team was supported by resources drawn from Allen & Overy’s 42 offices.