Imran Farooq, CEO, Samana Developers

Samana Developers has implemented AML CFT compliance and control. In what ways will the system benefit the investors?

Implementing the Ani-Money Laundering (AML) and Combatting the Financing of Terrorism (CFT) compliance is a commitment to the best corporate governance policy at Samana Developers. It is a very healthy benchmark set by Samana Developers under the UAE regulations. The AML compliance is healthy for banking, real estate and for the entire business ecosystem in Dubai.

It has boosted the confidence of investors. Not only buyers but also end-users are more confident that they are dealing with a developer who is AML compliant, responsible and has a long-term vision.

How many developers in Dubai are currently using AML compliance?

Not sure who and how many out there. I am sure all of the master developers and established real estate companies use the AML system.

We can say that most of the government-owned entities and listed companies strictly adhere to the AML laws.

With Samana Developers having implemented the AML system, I expect many developers will follow suit which will be a very healthy trend in the property market of Dubai.

Real estate developers in general feel bold enough to compete with their international peers with the AML compliance system implemented at their operations.

How will it benefit the overall real estate ecosystem of Dubai?

To answer it we need to have a brief background. UAE has established a robust AML framework to counter financial crimes. The country’s AML CFT regulations adhere to international standards and prevent the misuse of the financial system for illicit activities. All seven Emirates of UAE adhere to the federal AML regulations that are as per the international standards.

The AML CFT is excellent for the image of Dubai in particular because the metropolitan city is one of the top global business hubs. If 100 per cent of the developers become AML compliant, it will boost the overall image of Dubai’s property sector and investor confidence. More institutional investors will consider investing in Dubai as compared to other destinations in the world.

What will be Samana’s course of action if they find a suspicious transaction?

All suspicious activities are reported to relevant authorities, we have zero tolerance for any client with a bad reputation. Our foundations are strong which makes us one of the top sellers in Dubai.

Like many other financial centres in the world, Dubai has stern laws in place to combat and control suspicious transactions. It is mandatory for the financial institutions in Dubai to implement Know Your Customer (KYC) procedures to verify the identity of their clients and monitor transactions for any unusual or suspicious activity.

Dubai works in coordination with international organizations and other countries to exchange information and coordinate efforts in combating financial crimes. Dubai’s AML laws are based on federal government guidelines and regulations. The UAE has signed various agreements, including with the FAFT, and conventions aimed at strengthening its AML/CFT framework and enhancing international cooperation in this regard.

Can your buyers pay by cryptocurrency?

Payment through cryptocurrency is easy and saves time, especially for international buyers who are sitting outside of the country. We are open to the new technology and payment gateway.

In fact our investors are more confident when they come to know that Samana Developers is an AML-compliant organisation and has partnered with Complyfin, a specialised AML CFT implementation technology firm based in Dubai and affiliated with Down Jones.

What was the response from the Dubai Land Department on Samana implementing AML CFT compliance?

Generally, all authorities in Dubai, UAE and anywhere in the world appreciate such measures. It boosts stakeholder and investor confidence as well as improves B2G (Business-To-Government) relations. This eventually benefits everyone and contributes to strengthen the economy.

Being an AML-compliant offers several benefits for individuals, businesses, and the overall financial system.

Legal compliance: Reduces the risk of facing penalties for non-compliance.

Enhanced reputation: AML compliance demonstrates a commitment to ethical business practices and integrity, which can enhance the reputation of individuals and businesses in the eyes of clients, partners, and regulators. It fosters trust and credibility, which is crucial for attracting customers and investors.

International business opportunities: Compliance with AML regulations is essential for engaging in international business activities and expanding into global markets. Many countries and jurisdictions require AML compliance as a condition for conducting cross-border transactions and investments. Being AML-compliant enables businesses to participate in global trade and commerce more effectively.

Overall, being AML compliant in Dubai not only ensures legal compliance but also fosters trust, enhances reputation, facilitates access to financial services, mitigates financial risks, and opens up international business opportunities. It is an essential aspect of responsible and ethical business conduct in today's globalized economy.

At Samana Group, we are keen to learn and keep moving from the traditional to a modern business with strong foundations, moral ethics and our transition from a local to a global company.