Samer Qudah - Partner, Head of Corporate Structuring - Corporate Structuring

Welcome to this month’s Law Update!

I hope that you, your friends and family are keeping well.

This month we focus on the Transport and Insurance sectors. As we know, the airline industry has been one of the hardest hit by COVID-19. Slowly but surely, the industry is finding its feet despite the ongoing challenges, navigating its way back to safety and increasing tourist and transit numbers to and through the region. Emirates Airlines has led the charge in facilitating the ease of crossing borders with its ground-breaking offer of free insurance cover against COVID-19 related medical costs; offering safe travel and peace of mind for passengers. The challenges faced by global transportation and logistics firms in facilitating the continued operation of supply chains has led to innovative solutions as well as an increase in cross-border co-operation in order to ensure that goods, including critical medical supplies, safely reach their intended destinations with minimal disruption. Our Transport and Insurance teams gives a detailed overview of their articles and highlights the importance of a cohesive approach to air, land and sea transportation.

As Middle Eastern countries seek to further strengthen their maritime capabilities, the team goes on to discuss the importance of registering ships under UAE law.

The Insurance arm of the team discusses the key legal issues for insurance providers under the new UAE Electronic Regulations, noting what needs to be done in order to comply with the rules and guarantee a smooth roll out of this new technology.

Our teams analyse two important  judgments: firstly, whether a vessel purchase price can be considered a maritime debt under UAE Maritime Law; and secondly whether a consultant’s report or the opinion of a court appointed expert should be used to determine material breaches when terminating a commercial agency.

Turning to our construction experts, we take another look at COVID-19 as the true impact on the industry begins to unfold and parties’ approaches to contractual obligations begin to evolve and adapt to the changing circumstances.

Our senior Technology Media & Telecommunications lawyers in KSA and the UAE collaborate to examine the requirements for data protection officers in the Dubai International Financial Centre and underline the importance of data controllers and data processors knowing whether or not they are subject to the statutory requirement to appoint a Data Processing Officer under the DIFC Data Protection Law.

Another interesting topic explored in this month’s issue is the importance of professional indemnity insurance and, in particular, we examine the distinction between civil and criminal liability and why professional indemnity does not cover criminal liability.

Finally, we move on to the measures implemented by Dubai Customs to mitigate the economic impact of COVID-19, including tax and fee breaks as well as postponement of fines for various violations all with the view of reducing the cost of doing business and enhancing the flow of trade in the  Emirate.

I very much hope that you enjoy this edition. Should you have any queries on any of the topics, feel free to reach out.