The first Law Update of 2024 is here, and our first focus of the year spotlights Healthcare and Lifesciences, a sector that is undergoing significant growth and development across the MENA region.
Our focus provides an insight into some of the most important regulatory updates across the region, such as the UAE’s groundbreaking law on the use of human genome, Kuwait’s resolution on nuclear and radioactive materials, the new regulations for healthcare services in Qatar, Egypt’s healthcare regulatory framework, and the impact of the Saudi Civil Transactions Law on the healthcare and life sciences sector … and there is so much more!
Beyond the healthcare pages our lawyers share with you multi-sector insights where you will discover articles on Dubai’s DIFC regulatory framework for startups, Bahrain’s commercial agencies law, and we also shed light on Kuwaiti civil code and the advantages of setting up a joint stock company in Saudi Arabia.Read the full edition
The CMA issued its Rules for Foreign Investment in Securities (“Rules”). These rules significantly liberalise the parameters for foreign investors investing in securities listed on the Saudi Stock Exchange (Tadawul).
The significant changes included the removal of a formal assessment process for QFIs, expanding the number of foreign investor categories that can qualify as a QFI without meeting the specified monetary threshold and adding a new channel for foreign investment in securities by enabling all foreign natural and legal persons to invest in securities listed on the main market through discretionary portfolios management by CMIs.
There has been a significant widening of the definition of a QFI under the Rules. While the earlier requirement of having assets under its management or custody of SAR 1,875,000,000 remains in place, there are a number of instances where this requirement does not apply. Under Article 7(b) of the Rules, the minimum assets under management condition does not apply to the following categories of investors:
There does not appear to be any requirement to undergo an assessment process as there was under the previous Rules for Qualified Foreign Financial Institutions Investment in Listed Securities (issued under CMA Resolution Number 1-42-2015). Previously, CMIs were entering into assessment agreements with QFIs in order for the foreign investor to qualify.
Furthermore, the Rules clarify that a QFI may engage with foreign investment firms, foreign portfolio managers and custodians or advisors for the purposes of investing in listed securities. Foreign investment firms can provide asset management, custody services and advise QFIs in respect of securities listed on the Tadawul without any authorisation from the CMA.
The Rules included developing conditions on the investment of the non-resident foreign investors in listed securities through Swap Agreements, including removing the requirement on the duration of such swap agreements, as well as removing the requirement to notify the CMA prior to entering into a Swap Agreement.
Our Banking & Finance team are equipped to provide advice and guidance to investors in navigating the recently liberalized rules for foreign investment in securities listed on the Saudi Stock Exchange.