Abu Dhabi Authorities Embrace AI, RegTech

Abu Dhabi regulators are embracing digital technologies to streamline doing business in the Emirate.

Last month, for example, the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development launched a digital platform connecting free zones known as the e-link in order to make doing business in the Emirate easier.

The platform, which provides a single digital portal for sharing and viewing economic licenses, will digitally link businesses in four free zones — KEZAD Group (made up of 12 economic zones), Abu Dhabi Airports Free Zone, the Media Free Zone- Abu Dhabi (twofour54) and Masdar City Free Zone.

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With more than 40 spread throughout the United Arab Emirates (UAE), free zones are integral components of the country’s economy and are home to a major part of Emirate business activities.

Ranging from skyscraper-decked financial centers to sprawling industrial parks and ports, these free zones are intended to attract foreign businesses to set up shop in the Middle Eastern country and enjoy benefits such as a full exemption from import, export, corporate and personal taxes.

To make them even more attractive, the e-link will streamline business processes by creating a unified database of economic licenses in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.

Platform users will also be able to view data of the beneficial owner of economic establishments, thanks to integration with the Ministry of Economy’s database and the National Economic Register.

Tapping AI to Digitize Processes

While the Department of Economic Development is moving to digitize the way businesses access and view licenses, the Emirate’s financial services regulator has mobilized artificial intelligence (AI) to help automate the license application process.

Dubbed the “RegBot,” the AI-powered licensing solution launched by the Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) was built in collaboration with Nexus FrontierTech and uses natural language processing (NLP) to guide applicants in registering a new venture capital (VC) fund.

For instance, if the applicant doesn’t provide adequate information on its risk management systems in relation to a regulatory requirement, the RegBot will prompt them to provide additional data.