Dubai issues new financial center insolvency law after Abraaj collapse

Dubai International Financial Center (DIFC) is the largest financial hub in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia. (Courtesy of DIFC)
Updated 11 June 2019

Dubai issues new financial center insolvency law after Abraaj collapse

  • New procedures in line with global best practices introduced as a first for the region
  • The new Insolvency Law and Regulations will come into effect on Aug. 28, 2019

DUBAI: Dubai’s ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum issued a new insolvency law on Tuesday for companies operating in the Dubai International Financial Center (DIFC), the largest financial hub in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia.
The new law, due to come into effect in August, has been issued following the collapse of Dubai-based private equity firm Abraaj, which had a DIFC-regulated entity Abraaj Capital.
The firm that had been the Middle East and North Africa’s biggest buyout fund unraveled after a row with some investors over the use of money in a $1 billion health care fund.
The new law introduces a “new debtor in possession bankruptcy regime” for debtors that have filed for bankruptcy but still hold assets, according to a statement on the Dubai’s ruler official website.
Abraaj, its founder Arif Naqvi and a former executive are being investigated by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on US charges that they defrauded investors, including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) said in April it was in touch with the SEC and had been investigating Abraaj Capital Ltd, an entity of the collapsed firm, over a range of matters but has not specified what they are.


Oil workers evacuated as storm heads for US rigs

Updated 20 September 2020

Oil workers evacuated as storm heads for US rigs

  • Production faces renewed threat as Beta bears down on key Gulf of Mexico platforms

NEW YORK: Royal Dutch Shell halted some oil production and began evacuating workers from a US Gulf of Mexico platform, the company said, as a new tropical storm flared.

Beta, the 23rd-named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season, formed in the Bay of Campeche and was forecast to strengthen steadily and become a hurricane by Sunday off the Texas coast, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said.

Shell said it was removing non-essential employees from its Perdido platform in the western Gulf of Mexico and securing nearby drilling rigs. Occidental Petroleum Corp, which operates in the same area, also began implementing storm procedures, it said.

Chevron Corp. has not newly evacuated staff and there was no impact from storm Beta on production at its operated facilities, the company said. Chevron owns a stake in Shell’s Perdido.

The NHC issued a hurricane watch for most of the Texas coast and warned of heavy rains along the northwest Gulf coast through Wednesday.

Beta could become the third Gulf of Mexico hurricane in less than a month, behind Laura and Sally. Hurricane Sally swept across the central and eastern Gulf, slamming into Alabama on Wednesday with winds of up to 105 mph (170 kph). Laura entered on Aug. 25 and hit southwest Louisiana with 150 mph winds.

There were 37 platforms on Friday that remained unstaffed, with oil output cut by 396,554 barrels per day and natural gas by 435 million cubic feet per day in the wake of Hurricane Sally.

The US Gulf of Mexico offshore oil production accounts for 17 percent of US crude oil production and 5 percent of US natural gas production.