Dubai has launched its third stimulus package on Saturday, to ease the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on businesses.
Worth 1.5 billion dirhams ($410 million), the new package, revealed by Crown Prince of Dubai, Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, raises the value of business incentives introduced by emirate to 6.3 billion dirhams ($1.72 billion).
Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, said: “Our economy is strong, has a stable foundation and has shown high resilience to crises, all of which enable us to effectively navigate any global challenge. We stand together with the private sector to overcome the impact of the pandemic. We are keen to help businesses renew their growth momentum as soon as possible.”
The crown prince stressed that the SME sector represents a key pillar of the national economy and plays a major role in helping Dubai maintain its status as a global destination for entrepreneurs and start-ups.
“SMEs constitute a highly strategic sector and are a major contributor to the emirate's GDP. Supporting this sector in tiding over the current challenges is vital to accelerate our progress towards a diversified knowledge-based economy,” he said.
In order to support the business sectors across the economy, the government has launched a set of new initiatives.
The healthcare sector has taken steps to ensure its payments to private hospitals are expedited.
In the tourism and entertainment sector, an initiative to refund hotel establishments and restaurants 50 percent of the 7 percent municipality fees charged on sales will be extended to December 2020.
In the international trade sector, fines for some customs cases will be reduced by 80 percent, with the option to pay them in instalments.
In the construction sector, payment of financial dues to contractors will be expedited and all financial guarantees for construction activities related to commercial licenses will be refunded. This will be replaced by another system that guarantees all the rights of the contracting parties.
In the education sector, private schools will be exempted from commercial and educational license renewal fees until the end of the year.
The temporary entry permits obtained by art exhibitions for artworks loaned from institutions outside Dubai will be extended until the end of 2020.
As of July 11, the UAE has recorded 54,453 cases of coronavirus and a death toll of 331, according to the UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention.
(Writing by Seban Scaria; editing by Daniel Luiz)
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