Dubai said it would waive some fees on aviation and real-estate transactions, in the latest step by authorities in the United Arab Emirates to bolster economic growth and attract investments.
The Executive Council also approved plans to cut charges levied on businesses, and freeze private school fees for a year, state-run WAM news agency reported on Wednesday.
The move comes a day after neighboring Abu Dhabi announced plans to spend 50 billion dirham ($13.6 billion) over three years to stimulate growth.
Abu Dhabi and Dubai are the largest of the seven emirates that make up the UAE, the second-biggest Arab economy after Saudi Arabia.
“The measures were broader in scope than we had expected following the instructions by the ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid last month for the government to reduce the cost of doing business in the emirate and take steps to accelerate economic growth,” according to a research note from Emirates NBD PJSC. “The new measures should offer some relief for businesses across all sectors as well as providing a boost to the key transport and logistics sector.”
Dubai has led the way as Gulf nations seek to shift their economies away from oil, turning itself into the Middle East’s main banking, commerce and transport hub. But with many oil-rich neighbors still struggling to recover from the 2014 slump in crude prices, the emirate’s economic growth has also slowed.
The decision to waive 19 fees imposed on the aviation industry and aircraft landing-permits aims to attract more than 1 billion dirhams in investments, the Executive Council said.
Other decisions include: waiving the 4-percent fee for a delay in property registration imposed by the Dubai Land Department; and reducing so-called market rate, a charge imposed by the municipality on businesses, by half to 2.5 percent.