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DIFC seminar highlights infrastructure and services offered to family businesses

Titled 'Families, Governance and Markets: Building & Sustaining Wealth', the event was part of the Knowledge Series, a regular series of seminars organised by DIFC to raise awareness about its infrastructure and business support services. Senior officials from DIFC Authority and other industry practitioners spoke at the event.

Nasser Al Shaali, CEO of DIFC Authority said: "Family businesses, which are the bedrock of the Middle Eastern economy, constitute one of the Dubai International Financial Centre's key focuses. We have enacted unique laws that enable family businesses to set up Single Family Offices and Family Trusts to manage their private wealth. These initiatives, combined with resources that support corporate and family governance development, make DIFC one of the most productive bases for family businesses anywhere in the world. Such resources will be critical to family-run institutions in negotiating the critical challenges many of them face in sustaining and growing their business in today's economy."

Topics that were addressed at the Forum included structures and solutions for succession planning and sustainability, the DIFC Trust Law, family governance, and building capacity in boards.

DIFC provides a specialised legal framework and a wide range of resources for family-owned businesses to develop their business. In September 2008, DIFC launched regulations to enable family businesses, from anywhere in the world, to set up holding companies at DIFC to manage private family wealth and family structures.

In addition to this, through its subsidiaries like Hawkamah and Mudara (IOD), DIFC provides family-owned businesses a variety of resources to enhance corporate and family governance. Family offices located in DIFC also have easy access to a range of consultancy services.