Union Bank of India heads for Dubai

A further boost to the state of the economy in Dubai, and a pointer to future growth, comes with the announcement that the Union Bank of India is to open a branch in Dubai. With foreign investment in the region a major part of the recovery and growth process it is a promising sign when such a major bank moves into the market, and with the promise of help to Indian companies wishing to invest in Dubai there is plenty of scope for added investment opportunities.

Although the Union Bank of India has an office in Dubai this will be a fully fledged branch, and the Khaleej Times reports that the Chairman and Managing Director of the bank – M.V. Nair – has declared that the branch will be dedicated to helping the interests of Indians who are not resident in the region in their quest for business investment.

To be based in the Dubai International Finance Centre – the DIFC – which is the major international hub for the financial world in Dubai, the bank will, according to Nair, focus on foreign currency funding. The DIFC offers a place where trade is much more open, as the Chairman explained in his comments:

“In DIFC, we are permitted to do wholesale business and here the purpose would be… supporting the UAE and India trade that will be major focus.”

With Indian investment in the region growing all the time the announcement is a definite boon for Dubai at a time when foreign investment is vital to the growth of the economy.

Dubai based expats chased by UK debt collectors

The practice of fleeing Dubai with debts outstanding is one that has become well known in the world news in recent times, and that of people felling to the UAE to escape debts in other countries equally so, yet it has recently been announced that lenders in the UAE have been engaging British debt collecting agencies to chase those who have fled the region without settling what is outstanding.

Anyone who believes that they can leave their debts behind is in for a shock, as Michael Collyer, of Global Credit Solutions – a major collections company with offices across the world – told Arabian Business recently:

“From a debt collection point of view, a debt is payable anywhere in the world, wherever it has arisen. Just because a debtor moves country does not remove the responsibility for the debt.”

The problems begin with the court process in the UAE, and the complex legal questions surrounding debt that are a hindrance to the collections process. Reema Ashraf, of Adash and Partners in Dubai, shed light on the problem in her comments to Arabian Business:

“A court judgment in the country of origin of the debt is not automatically enforceable in the UAE unless there is a bi-lateral reciprocal treaty permitting exactly that. If there is no such treaty, then you would essentially need to litigate from scratch in the UAE and bring a claim for unpaid debt. The UAE Courts would have jurisdiction simply by virtue of the fact that the debtor is resident here.”

The difficulty in enforcing collections has so far been a deterrent, yet it would appear that the introduction of these major companies dedicated to surmounting the problem is a major step forward.