Dubai: UAE insurance companies have expressed concern about the rising cost of medical treatment, indicating that premiums might rise in the future, though they did not say when.

UAE-based insurance companies told Gulf News they had no plans to increase health insurance premiums now, contrary to recent media reports.

This comes before the implementation of a mandatory health insurance law for expatriates in Dubai, expected by the end of the year.

Representatives of health insurers attributed the rising costs to inflation and the falling value of the dollar pegged to the dirham compared to other major currencies such as the euro.

Xavier Veyrey, Chief Operating Officer at AXA Insurance, told Gulf News: "[Rising costs of treatment] is due to inflation and the evolving nature of medical technology", adding that the exchange rate was a "very important" factor in costs.

Mohammad Rayees, Assistant General Manager for National General Insurance Company, said since January, there has been an increase of up to 75 per cent in health services costs.

Abdul Muttalib Mustafa, General Manager of Oman Insurance, said that the company had not considered raising health insurance rates this year.

Ministry plans inspections to check unauthorised price increases

The Ministry of Economy is monitoring shops to curb unauthorised price hikes of commodities and services.

The Consumer Protection Unit (CPU) at the Ministry of Economy held a meeting yesterday with representatives from the Dubai Department of Economic Development (DED) and Dubai Municipality, chaired by Dr Hashim Al Nuaimi, director of CPU.

Al Nuaimi said that it was agreed during the meeting to step up coordination among the three bodies to 'strictly' monitor shops and other sectors by conducting inspections to prevent price hikes of commodities and services under claims of increases of employees' salaries.

He added that DED and the municipality would submit to CPU reports of action taken against violators. He also urged consumers to call the CPU hotline if violations are witnessed by shops and suppliers in Dubai.

Consumers can call:

Consumer Protection Unit (Ministry Of Economy): 600522225

Dubai Department of Economic Development: 04-2020220

Dubai Municipality Emergency: 04-2232323

Dubai Municipality: 800900

Have your say
Do you think they should be taking measures to tackle inflation rather than checking price rise? Will it be an effective solution? Tell us at

Your comments

Things are getting worst for expatriates, this is another example. Time to start thinking about going back to our country.
Abu Dhbai,UAE
Posted: August 06, 2007, 11:43

That's totally wrong. Tackle the root cause of the problem i.e. the real reasons behind the inflation and not the end result of it i.e. price increases of services and goods! I guess they decided to take the easy road as the right one would require serious self-examination and decisive drastic measures.
Posted: August 06, 2007, 11:28

Yes. The main cause of rising prices is due to inflation and higher cost of living (rents) which needed prior attention before the rent cap.
Posted: August 06, 2007, 10:45