NEW DELHI, -- Abu Dhabi Global Market, ADGM, the international financial free zone, is looking to attract businesses in India and elsewhere with incentives such as one-stop servicing, full ownership, zero personal and corporate tax and unlimited repatriation of capital.
The UAE created the financial centre in the capital in October 2015 to support growth and diversification in the nation's economy, Martin Tidestrom, Business Development Director of ADGM, told the Nikkei Asian Review while leading a delegation to India in the second week of November.
"In order to achieve this, we have created a business and operational platform that is unique in the region," Tidestrom said. "We are a free zone [that operates under] English common law, which is the most recognised, and considered highly transparent for big-scale finance," he added.
The financial centre created three independent bodies, the Registration Authority, the Financial Services Regulatory Authority and ADGM Courts, to operate in line with international best practices recognised in key global financial centers.
ADGM, located on the 114-hectare Al Maryah Island, registered 181 companies in its first year.
"With financial services at the core, we have a very strong representation from professional services as well," Tidestrom said. "Auditing, accounting and various advisory companies are also coming on board to benefit financial services businesses and others. Companies also are interested in sectors such as energy, defense, health care and oil and gas."
Australia's Macquarie Group has signed up, and Aberdeen Asset Management announced on 16th November the opening of an office in Abu Dhabi, making it the first international asset manager to set up shop in the new zone. As of 30th June, Aberdeen said it was managing assets totaling US$402 billion on behalf of institutional and private investors.
The recent $200 million Goldilocks Fund was the first launched by Abu Dhabi Financial Group. The group said it will "seek opportunities in equity markets where it can positively transform a company's fortune, revitalising the business strategy and providing the impetus to spur it on to future success."
Asked about other potential entrants, Tidestrom said, "We can't really reveal the names of our pipeline, but they are good local and regional banks and other big institutions."
Source: Nam News Network