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23 January 2013 — UK-UAE Trade Ties Strengthened Through Memorandum between Commercial Courts

23 January 2013 — UK-UAE Trade Ties Strengthened Through Memorandum between Commercial Courts

January 23, 2013


Commercial Court of England and Wales signs Memorandum of Guidance with Dubai’s DIFC Courts at London Ceremony

Support for Investors, Businessmen and Lawyers

Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 23 January 2013: Legal and trade relations between Dubai and the UK will be strengthened through a ‘Memorandum of Guidance’ (MoG) signed in London on 23 January between the Dubai’s International Centre (DIFC) Courts — the leading English language commercial court in the Middle East — and the Commercial Court of England and Wales, the world’s leading Commercial Court.

Dubai is now widely recognised as the investment and business hub of the Middle East. The Memorandum of Guidance is designed to assist investors, businessmen and lawyers in the UK who wish to develop closer trade and investment links with the Emirate — and vice versa. It clarifies existing arrangements between the two courts, defining such issues as the mutual enforcement of judgments — in accordance with principles and practices set out in detail in the document.

The Memorandum accordingly reflects the historic trade and industry links between the UK and the UAE, while reinforcing a shared commitment to providing the highest standards of commercial justice. It has been signed by DIFC Courts’ Chief Justice Michael Hwang and the Honourable Mr Justice Cooke, Judge In Charge of the Commercial Court of England and Wales.

The signing ceremony took place ahead of the ninth meeting of the UK-UAE Task Force, in the presence of the Foreign Office Minister for the Middle East and North Africa, Alistair Burt, and His Excellency Dr Anwar Gargash, the UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs. The UK-UAE Taskforce was established in June 2010 when UK Prime Minister David Cameron visited the UAE, with the objective of strengthening the UK’s relationship with the UAE across the board: in culture, education, defence and security, trade and investment, and foreign policy co-operation. Under the umbrella of the Task Force the UK-UAE bilateral relationship has gone from strength to strength.

Michael Hwang, Chief Justice of the DIFC Courts, commented: “We greatly welcome this Memorandum of Guidance, which will bring clarity and confidence to the relationship between our two courts. Without a clear understanding of enforcement and judicial procedures across borders, businesses are unable to form and nurture the international trade relationships needed to fuel economic growth.”

The Honourable Mr Justice Cooke, Judge In Charge of the Commercial Court of England & Wales, remarked: “A surprising number of people today are unaware of the reciprocity between courts. While reiterating the existing relationship between DIFC Courts and the UK Commercial Court, the Memorandum of Guidance sets out the basis upon which judgments of one court can be enforced in the other and helps to engender an atmosphere in which business can flourish.”

A comprehensive version of the Memorandum of Guidance can be found on the DIFC Courts’ website



For more information please contact:

Manal Shaikh
Capital MSL
Tel: +971 4 367 6158

About the Commercial Court of England and Wales

The Commercial Court, based at the Rolls Building in the City of London, deals with complex cases arising out of business disputes, both national and international, including

•   commercial agreements
•   import and export
•   carriage of goods by sea, land and air
•   banking and financial services
•   insurance and reinsurance
•   markets and exchanges
•   commodities
•   construction of ships, and
•   agency, arbitration and competition matters.

Disputes in the Commercial Courts are largely international in flavour, with the vast majority of cases having at least one defendant or claimant from outside England and Wales.

About the DIFC Courts

The UAE’s DIFC Courts administer a unique English-language common law system — offering swift, independent justice to settle local and international commercial or civil disputes. The Courts, based in Dubai, provide certainty through transparent, enforceable judgments from internationally-recognised judges, who adhere to the highest global legal standards. The DIFC Courts are independent from, but complementary to, the UAE’s Arabic-language civil law system — offering a choice that strengthens both processes while ensuring public access to world-class justice.

In October 2011, a decree of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, opened the DIFC Courts’ jurisdiction to businesses from all across the GCC region and beyond to provide the international business community with access to one of the most advanced commercial courts in the world.

The DIFC Courts were established under laws enacted by the late HH Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Ruler of Dubai in September 2004. The laws establishing the DIFC Courts are designed to ensure that the DIFC Courts provide the certainty, flexibility and efficiency expected by Court users. Nearly 500 cases have been resolved through the DIFC Courts since 2008, while over 90% of Small Claims Tribunal cases are concluded within three weeks. The Courts’ community-focused approach encourages early settlement, while their successful track record supports Dubai’s growing status as an international business hub.

In line with HH Sheikh Mohammed’s vision, the DIFC Courts serve to develop the UAE national workforce and enhance the competitiveness of Emirati advocates. The DIFC Courts are spearheading training programmes predominantly aimed at local Emirati lawyers, which offer knowledge of, and qualifications in, the English-language common law system.


Privacy Policy

The Dubai International Financial Centre and all its affiliates are committed to preserve the confidentiality, integrity and availability of client data and personal information.

Dubai International Financial Centre and all its affiliates employees, vendors, contract workers, shall follow Information Security Management System in all the processes and technology.

  1. DIFC Courts's Top Management is committed to secure information of all our interested parties.
  2. Information security controls the policies, processes, and measures that are implemented by DIFC Courts in order to mitigate risks to an acceptable level, and to maximize opportunities in order to achieve its information security objectives.
  3. DIFC Courts and all its affiliates shall adopt a systematic approach to risk assessment and risk treatment.
  4. DIFC Courts is committed to provide information security awareness among team members and evaluate the competency of all its employees.
  5. DIFC Courts and all its affiliates shall protect personal information held by them in all its form.
  6. DIFC Courts and all its affiliates shall comply with all regulatory, legal and contractual requirements.
  7. DIFC Courts and all its affiliates shall provide a comprehensive Business Continuity Plan encompassing the locations within the scope of the ISMS.
  8. Information shall be made available to authorised persons as and when required.
  9. DIFC Courts’s Top Management is committed towards continual improvement in information security in all our processes through regular review of our information security management system.


The content of the DIFC Courts website is provided for information purposes only and should be disregarded when making decisions on inheritance and any other matters. Whilst every reasonable effort is made to make the information and commentary accurate and up to date, the DIFC Courts makes no warranties or representations to you as to the accuracy, authenticity or completeness of the content on this website, which is subject to change at any time without notice. The information and commentary does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice by the DIFC Courts or any person employed or connected with it or formerly so employed or connected, to any person on any matter, be it in relation to inheritance, succession planning or otherwise. You are strongly advised to obtain specific, personal advice from a suitably qualified lawyer in relation to your personal circumstances and your objectives. The DIFC Courts does not assume any liability and shall not be liable to you for any damages, including but not limited to, direct or indirect, special, incidental or consequential damages, losses or expenses arising in connection with this website, its administration and any content or lack thereof found on it. The information on this web site is not to be displayed except in full screen format. Although care has been taken to provide links to suitable material from this site, no guarantee can be given about the suitability, completeness or accuracy of any of the material that this site may be linked to or other material on the internet. The DIFC Courts cannot accept any responsibility for the content of material that may be encountered therein.