ADGM introduces new Company Service Providers Framework

ADGM RA 30/03/2021
5-year anniversary

Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), the International Financial Centre located in Abu Dhabi, has today introduced its framework to regulate Company Service Providers (CSP Framework) in ADGM. This follows the successful completion of a public consultation on the introduction of a commercially balanced and proportionate CSP Framework to be administered by the ADGM Registration Authority (RA).

The framework is designed to address the challenges and risks associated with the success and increasing demand for ADGM’s special purpose vehicles (SPVs) and foundations structures, particularly where these entities do not have a direct connection to the UAE or to ADGM.

The CSP Framework follows international best practice to enhance ADGM’s existing regulatory framework and introduces requirements for certain ‘non-exempt’ SPVs and foundations to appoint an ADGM-based CSP and, where appropriate, strengthens the regulatory obligations for providing company services in ADGM. This will position ADGM as a leading jurisdiction in the UAE in regard to the oversight of providing company services.

The regulatory obligations on CSPs include requirements to be fit and proper persons, maintain adequate insurance coverage and showcase adequate financial systems and human resources. In addition, CSPs that hold or control ‘client money’ have additional obligations with the introduction of client money rules, which are designed to safeguard money belonging to clients against potential misuse, misappropriation or fraud.

The CSP Framework will come into force on 12 April 2021 with transition periods aimed at promoting orderly integration of, and compliance with, the obligations therein.

Dhaher bin Dhaher Al Mheiri, CEO of the ADGM RA, said: “One of our key objectives is to build and maintain trust in our regulatory framework. We continuously strive to ensure that our legal framework is in line with international standards and is suitable for our community. The proposed CSP framework follows international best practice and aims to establish a robust regulatory framework for CSPs within ADGM.”

The legislative instruments comprising the CSP Framework are now available on the dedicated webpage: Commercial Rules & Regulations (Company Service Providers)