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  • Fujairah - United Arab Emirates
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The seventh-largest city in United Arab Emirates

The Emirate of Fujairah, one of the seven emirate of the United Arab Emirates, lies on the north eastern coast of the Arabian Peninsula. In the 25 years since the Emirates formed a federation in 1971, there has been rapid economic and social development in Fujairah under the leadership of the Ruler, His Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi, who succeeded his father, Sheikh Mohammed in 1974. Over the past two decades, Fujairah has developed a stable, well balanced and diversified economy assisted by the fortune of its geographical position facing the Gulf of Oman and the Arabian Sea, providing ready access to international shipping routes.

Much of the Emirate of Fujairah is occupied by rugged mountains, which attract more rainfall than the desert areas that comprise most of the United Arab Emirates, permitting a limited degree of agriculture in the mountain valleys, or wadis, and along the coastal plain. For much of the year, the weather is comparatively temperate and the combination of both scenic mountain views and seascapes provides Fujairah with the basic ingredients to develop tourism.

How to set up business in the Fujairah Free Zone Authority

The incorporation of Fujairah Free Zone by Amiri Decree in 1987 resulted in the establishment of a team of dedicated professionals to manage the Zone. Adjacent to the Port of Fujairah, and 15 minutes drive from Fujairah International Airport, the Fujairah Free Zone offers a truly accessible location.

At the Port, Container Vessels call weekly from U.S., West Coast, Far East, Indian Sub-Continent, N. Europe, the Mediterranean and Red Sea. The Airport offers scheduled International flights with Gulf Air, Air India and Aeroflot. Numerous Charter Operators also use the Airport offering further destinations.

Doing business in the AGCC Countries couldn't be easier. Excellent highways connect Fujairah to all the major AGCC cities. The Road haulage business in he Emirates has matured in recent years, and now offers standards comparable with Europe, the U.S. etc.

When starting any business COSTS are important. In Fujairah it is not only the Free Zone Authority who are aware of this. Landlords of residential properties keep rents keenly competitive. Two bedroom apartments are readily available from Dhs. 12,000 per annum. Fujairah National Catering manage a Labour Camp adjacent to the Free Zone and offer attractive contract rates.

Free Zone Cost Benefits

The Free Zone Authority minimises costs by offering tailor-made start up packages. As a first step, readymade offices in 35 square meter units are available for rent. Warehousing units of 500 - 1000 square meters have been constructed, and are available at realistic rates. If your business requires a special unit, the Free Zone Authority can build to your requirements. Construction costs are carefully controlled. An average of 4 months is required to build a special unit.

If you intend to trade within the Emirates, the Fujairah Trade Centre can offer an excellent package of modern offices and sponsorship for an attractive annual rent.

Starting Procedures

Investors wishing to establish projects in Fujairah Free Zone should follow the procedures set out below to obtain the necessary approval:

1. Submission of completed questionnaire available from the Fujairah Free Zone Authority, together with the following:

  • Certificate of Registration of your Parent Company incorporating the origin of the country, along with the legal papers relating to the establishment of the company.
  • Legalised certificate indicating the Proprietor, the Board of Directors and appointed Manager.
  • An application for the utilities required for Water, Electricity and planning documents along with the feasibility study of the project.

2. Initial approval will be given in accordance with the evaluation of the submitted papers, authenticity of the project and based on the infrastructure of the Port and the Airport.

3. Once the initial approval is granted, full references and documentation will be required to be submitted to the executive committee (Headed by the Chairman) for final approval.

4. After obtaining final approval from the Executive Committee, the Authority will sign the contract with the Authorised representative of the company upon fulfilling the following terms:

  • Financial dues of the first year rent.
  • One year Bank Guarantee and post dated cheques for remaining years.
  • Insurance for the staff and the premises.
  • Registration of your parent company (in original) from the concerned Embassy, the same should also be notarised by Fujairah Chamber of Commerce.
  • Authorised Representative should hold a Power of Attorney from the proprietor.
  • In case of any Shareholders, the names should be provided to enable us to incorporate the same in the Lease Agreement.

All will be in accordance with the terms of the contract.

5. Detailed building plan must be submitted to the Authority for approval, before construction of the Building.

6. Operational licenses will be issued after the Company has been registered with Chamber of Commerce, and a copy of the registration to be provided for the Authority's records.

Free Zone Licences

Fujairah Free Zone Authority will issue an Operational Licence to accepted Companies according to the approved activities, requirements and status. Companies have an option according to the nature of their Business and Shareholding status (UAE), to choose either 'Free Zone Operational Licence" "Free Zone Special Operational Licence" or "National Industrial" which can be renewed annually as long as the lease is in effect.

The National Bank of Fujairah was incorporated in October 1982 by an Emiri Decree of the Ruler of Fujairah with an initial share capital of Dirhams 150 million.

By pursuing conservative lending policies and targeting established names in the relatively stable trading lines of textiles, building materials, hardwares, automobiles and dry foodstuffs, the Bank has shown consistent growth in profitability.

At the end of 1996, the capital adequacy was in excess of 20% substantially higher than the minimum requirement of 10% recommended by the UAE Central Bank. In late 1994, the Bank relocated to its own 7 storey building in the heart of Dubai's financial district and a few months later moved into similarly owned new Head Office premises in Fujairah. In early 1997, the Bank raised funding through a syndicated US$ 60 Million loan. The loan which was heavily over-subscribed, has a 3 year maturity and diversifies the Bank's sources of funds, being raised from a syndicate of International banks.

Independent Auditors' Report to the Shareholders of National Bank of Fujairah

We have audited the accompanying financial statements of National Bank of Fujairah ("the Bank") for the year ended 31 December 1997.

Opinion - In our opinion, the financial statements present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of National Bank of Fujairah as at 31 December 1997, and of the results of its operations and its cash flows for the year then ended in accordance with the International Accounting Standards and comply, where appropriate, with the Articles of Association and the Federal Law No. 8 of 1984 (as amended).

The Arabian Leopard Trust (ALT) is a non-profit, non-political organisation, run by volunteers. Started in 1993, it was legally established by Emiri Decree by HH Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Ruler of Sharjah, in November 1994. With the Arabian leopard as its flagship species, the Trust is concerned with conservation of indigenous Arabian wildlife, specifically the large predators of the mountain regions.

Are there really leopards living in the mountains of Arabia? What are they like?

The Arabian leopard (Panthera pardus nimr) is much smaller and much lighter in colour than its African counterpart. It occurs in all the mountain ranges from northern Arabia and the Negev desert to the Asir mountains in southwestern Saudi Arabia and Yemen, into southern Oman.

How many of these leopards are still in the wild?

No one knows for sure. An official estimate is that there are probably no more than 100 individuals left in all of Arabia-which would make the "nimr" 10 times more rare than the Giant Panda. In the UAE, they were considered to be extinct, as no sightings had been reported between the early 1970s and 1986. Then, in 1986, four leopards were killed in Ras Al Khaimah. In early 1992, an Arabian leopard was caught live near Manama, and in November 1992 another one was killed in the Musandam mountains. In May 1993, two leopards were hunted near Ras Al Khaimah, of which one was killed and one was wounded. Since then, there have been several sightings and two more leopards were killed in November 1997 in the Musandam mountains of Oman. In the UAE probably no more than six to 10 individuals still live in the mountains. As so few leopards are left, the ALT has taken action to protect them.

What do leopards eat?

As a family, they occur from the jungles of Southeast Asia to the high, cold mountains of the Himalayas, and from the deserts of Arabia to the bush of Africa. They are opportunistic feeders, eating whatever they can catch. In the arid mountains they used to feed on wild ungulates - ibex, gazelles and Arabian tahr - birds and rodents. In southern Arabia, their diet also includes the hyrax and probably baboons. Over the last 20 years, the number of goats has increased significantly in the mountains and the vegetation has suffered tremendously from their voracious appetites. The consequent lack of food combined with hunting has reduced the numbers of wild ungulates to the point of extinction, leaving the predators no other food than the domestic goats.

But won't the owners of the goats be unhabby about this?

Indeed they are. That is what threatens the lives of the leopards and the other predators like the caracal and the Arabian wolf.

Are there wolves also? and what is a caracal?

Wolves are probably extinct in the UAE mountains, but they still occur in southern Arabia. Caracals are still relatively numerous. The caracal is a medium-sized cat, that resembles the lynx in Europe and the bobcat in America. It lives on small mammals, birds and reptiles and is frequently hunted when it attacks livestock.

Are these carnivores dangerous to people?

Mountain farmers report that, contrary to what city dwellers often believe, leopards are not normally dangerous to people. Only when cornered during a hunt will they defend themselves. And since they are well-equipped with powerful claws and jaws, they can then inflict bad injuries. But there is almost no chance to encounter one accidentally, for they are extremely shy and will have heard people approach and have fled long before they are ever seen. Like most desert animals, the predators are mainly active in the late evening and very early morning, so they are rarely in conflict with human activity.

What kind of action can be taken to ensure protection for these animals?

One of the most important aims of the ALT is to educate the general public at all levels about the wildlife that exists in the Arabian peninsula and that needs protection. At the same time, research is being carried out in the mountains to find out more about the needs of the large predators and about their interactions with the human population in these areas. This should lead to the creation of nature reserves, where man and wildlife can co-exist peacefully. Captive breeding needs to be done to boost dwindling numbers of indigenous animals and for this a special breeding centre is being constructed in Sharjah by the Ruler.

Are there any leopards in captivity?

For many years, there has been a breeding pair in Oman, in the breeding centre of HM Sultan Qaboos. From this pair, there were five living offspring as of end-1996. One of these was sent in breeding loan to the ALT in Sharjah in late 1995, to be paired with a male from Yemen, however a successful mating is yet to be achieved. One other male is in a private collection in Dubai.

What has the Arabian leopard trust done until now?

The ALT has managed to raise the general awareness about Arabian wildlife throughout the country and even abroad. ALT-sponsored scientific surveys in the UAE and Yemen mountains have brought to light many facts. Besides confirming that the status of wildlife is generally very precarious, some exciting discoveries were made: Blanford's fox, unknown to exist in the UAE mountains until 1995, was recorded for the first time, while the Arabian tahr, thought to be extinct in the UAE since 1983, was rediscovered and recorded. Areas were identified which are suitable to be nature reserves and management plans for these reserves are being drawn up, prior to presenting the proposals to the Rulers. Captive breeding of various animals was started and will continue in the new breeding centre, to be opened in 1998.

Is there support from local authorities for conservation activities?

From the beginning, HH Dr Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, patron of the ALT, has strongly supported its conservation activities. The Dubai Wildlife Research Centre has donated food for the captive breeding programme, while staff of the National Avian Research Centre has cooperated closely in surveys and informal meetings. International contact with neighbouring countries resulted in the formation in October 1995 of the Leopard Group of Arabia, which concentrates on cooperation in the field of captive breeding and research. Good contacts exist also with IUCN, WWF and various wildlife trusts and centres abroad.

What does the ALT plan for the near future?

The educational campaign needs to be extended to include smaller towns and villages. There is still a need to transform the conservation effort from mostly expatriate activity into one for UAE nationals. A training programme for young men to become wildlife rangers and conservation workers is being developed, and sponsorship for nationals to enroll in wildlife management courses abroad is being considered. Several proposed nature reserves will need implementation and the ALT hopes to be able to provide expert consultants for this, while at the same time research of the ecology of certain habitats should continue.

Where does the ALT get its funds?

Funds are raised from memberships and donations as well as special events. The sale of ALT Promotional items -- specially designed to be eco-friendly and educational -- has been a major source of regular income. Adoptions of animals in ALT care has proven to be quite popular. Corporate sponsorship by several major businesses has enabled the ALT to carry out its activities. No direct government funds have been used so far.

What can I do to play a part in the conservation of the Arabian leopard and other indigenous wildlife?

There are numerous ways in which you can make a difference:

You can become a "Friend of the Arabian leopard" by signing up for a membership. You will be kept informed of the progress of the conservation efforts by way of a quarterly newsletter. Spread the word about the trust and encourage sponsorship of ALT activities. Adopt an animal and contribute toward its upkeep. Come to the monthly members' meetings to hear about current activities and to see where you can get involved. Protect wild animals whenever you can by respecting the environment. If you go out into the desert, make sure that you do not drive outside the established tracks -- it destroys the burrows of small animals -- and that you do not leave any rubbish behind -- hungry animals could eat things like plastic that can be harmful to them.