Welcome to the Saudi Arabia focus edition of Law Update.
One of the key markets in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) that continues to lead from the front is the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). As the largest country in the Middle East and the 18th largest economy in the world, the progress KSA continues to make is underpinned by its Vision 2030 that envisions developing the country as an investment powerhouse and hub that ultimately connects Asia, Europe, and Africa. Given Saudi Arabia’s significance to the regional economy, our team of experts have prepared a range of pertinent articles that provide insights into new laws, regulations, and the legal landscape in the Kingdom.
This edition will provide you with an up-to-date guide on matters such as; the framework issued by the Saudi Central Bank on IT governance, the anti-corruption landscape under Vision 2030; we also provide practical tips for dispute avoidance. This is only a snapshot; there are many more articles within the KSA focus section for you to read, which we hope you will find valuable and enjoyable.Read the edition
December 2014 – January 2015
In an attempt to improve the efficiency of the insurance sector (“Sector”) and improve the quality of the insurance services and products offered to consumers by underwriting new risks, the Capital Market Authority (“CMA”) in Oman has made some essential amendments to the insurance law (“Law”) through the issuance of Sultani Decree number 39/2014 in relation to the legal form and the share capital requirement of companies that conduct insurance business in Oman.
The Sector is mainly regulated by the Law and its implementing regulations. The new amendments include the following:
About two-thirds of insurance companies in the Oman market will be affected by the new amendments and will need to comply with the amendments within a period of three years. It is not clear how the new amendments will be accommodated with the new Islamic Insurance law (“Takaful”), which is in the process of being drafted by the CMA. Given the fact that Takaful will be a law on its own, existing insurance companies will not be permitted to sell Islamic products.
The Sector has been liberalised in recent years by the amendments to the Law made by the CMA. Parallel to this, underwriting by insurance companies has started in other areas of investment such as health insurance, whereas areas such as car insurance have seen a decrease in recent years.
Property insurance is also on the rise following Cyclone Gonu’s impact and damage caused to properties and infrastructure in the capital, Muscat, and other areas in Oman. Nonetheless, yearly announcements of the possibility of natural disasters occurring have also contributed to the rise of property insurance.