Dubai Diamond Exchange
Dubai Diamond Exchange struck an accord with its Israeli peer group in September. Now, DMCC wants to add other precious metals into the mix. Image Credit: Gulf News Archive

Dubai: Having signed a deal with Israel on diamonds, Dubai’s DMCC free zone is working on adding more precious stones and metals to the scope of the deal.

“There are a lot of opportunities that we're looking into,” said Feryal Ahmadi, Chief Operating Officer of Dubai Multi Commodities Centre. “The level of interest has actually grown – obviously - because the barriers to trade and to entry has now been reduced.”

The diamond industry was the focal point for much of the initial conversation after the UAE and Israel treaty was signed. Then, in September, DMCC’s Dubai Diamond Exchange signed an agreement with the Israeli counterpart.

"DMCC is tasked by the Government of Dubai to drive commodities trade in and through Dubai,” the official added. “Historically, two of the areas we have focused on are precious metals and precious stones.

“The ultimate goal is to transform Dubai into the world’s leading trade hub for both. To date, we have over 18,000 companies registered in the free zone – many of which are connected to the gold and diamond trade.”

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Well timed

Feryal Ahmadi, -Chief Operating Officer, DMCC
DMCC's retention rates of businesses licensed to operate from the free zone remain "strong", says Feryal Ahmadi, Chief Operating Officer. Image Credit: Gulf News Archive

It is against this backdrop that DMCC’s latest announcement – of allowing overseas companies to register for a license without any upfront fees - should be viewed. The clearances will be provided for the set up in five working days. Not only that, these companies get to have a six-month trial period to make up their minds.

“We introduced business support packages for new companies as well as existing member companies,” said Ahmadi. “As of date, our retention rate has been very strong… I can say very similar to previous years.

“We have also attracted the same number of companies as per our initial projection due to the support package waivers and incentives.”