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Dubai welcomes international associations after historic law change

International associations have been given the go-ahead to open regional headquarters in Dubai in a move which could turn the emirate into a 'gateway to the Middle East' for not-for-profit organisations.

Until now the legal framework made it almost impossible for international associations to establish themselves in Dubai. That's because organisations wanting to set up in the city-state had to have boards consisting entirely - or mainly - of United Arab Emirates (UAE) nationals.

But those rules have now been scrapped after association management company MCI (IMEA) and government stakeholders - comprising Dubai World Trade Centre, Dubai Tourism & Commerce Marketing and Dubai Chamber of Commerce & Industry - persuaded the emirate's government to establish a 'Free Zone' for associations.

MCI worked closely with Dubai Chamber of Commerce, the Dubai World Trade Centre and Dubai Congress Centre to push through the rule change.

Nikki Walker, VP Global Association Management and Consulting at MCI Group, said: "Enabling international associations to do business in the UAE is an integral part of our value proposition which is all about helping organisations to grow globally and penetrate, understand and succeed in new markets - so this was a critical initiative for us. Our efforts have had to focus on educating the authorities as to the role that associations play in advancing the economy, competitiveness, and overall skills as providers of professional development and education, certification, and industry standards."

Source: meetpie.com

MCI offers association management, consulting and congress management solutions.

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