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The New Kizad Free Zone in Abu Dhabi

Published on : May 2015
Author(s):Surbi Ver

Abu Dhabi, the capital of UAE is the striking example of change and exemplary growth. The visionary thinking and the aim to diversify its oil based economy has led the Abu Dhabi government to conceive Vision 2030. Abu Dhabi’s Vision 2030 is a comprehensive plan to optimize the development of the Emirate through a program promoting urban evolution with the aim of promoting its long term economic viability. Khalifa Industrial Zone Abu Dhabi or better known as KIZAD is the new industrial zone operating under a framework of regulations created by the Abu Dhabi Ports Company. KIZAD was established after a careful study of existing industrial zones within the UAE and the Gulf region which means that KIZAD has already had the helping hand of other regions’ mistakes. One of the prime questions that one has when establishing or expanding a business is the location of the business in line with the world markets. KIZAD was established in a location which is halfway from the major economies of Dubai and Abu Dhabi with close proximity to three major airports in the region. It was conceived keeping in line with the demands of the industrial development and has an extensive rail and port network incorporated within the plans. The expansion within KIZAD will also be strategic as it is the first industrial zone in the region that gives the investors the option of free zone ownership as well as non free zone. The companies established outside the free zone will be regulated by the relevant laws of Abu Dhabi while the companies established as free zone entities within KIZAD will be governed by the rules and regulations of Abu Dhabi Free Zone Authority (ADFZA). It must be kept in mind that both forms of companies  have the same process when it comes to land registration however the industrial licenses are obtained from different regulatory bodies. In case of a non-free zone entity, the industrial license will be issued by Zones Corp whilst the issuing authority for free zone licenses will be ADFZA. KIZAD and its officials continue to work single handedly to ensure that there is a streamlined process to obtain permits, clearances and licenses. The officials aim to ensure that each business in KIZAD is allocated to a dedicated relationship manager who will be based in the industrial zone and will have the necessary skills and knowledge to assist the businesses.

The officials in KIZAD are also ensuring that each investor and their business are allocated a plot of land according to their needs and requirements for example a manufacturer or heavy goods is given access to the modular path that runs directly to the port. The KIZAD officers have simplified the application and set up process. The applicants are requested to fill out an initial application form and submit a fee to KIZAD. This form is then forwarded to the plot allocation committee that reviews the application and the requirements for the industrial project and offers the most appropriate and available land parcel to the applicant. The applicant has forty five (45) days to agree to the offer or request the committee to consider revising the allocation of the plot if not suitable. Upon signing of the offer, KIZAD officials prepare the preliminary agreement which allows the applicant six months time to allow them to qualify any pre requisites for the industrial license such as conducting environmental studies. Following this the final  .

Agreement is signed and the applicant can apply for a preliminary industrial license. Once all the licensing stages are concluded, the applicant is then to sign a Musataha agreement. This agreement gives the applicant a long term right in the property and the land can be registered at the Land Registry Department in the name of the applicant. This agreement also ensures that the investor has all legal rights over any assets developed on the land within KIZAD. Each company that enters into a Musataha agreement are subject to KIZAD’s rules and regulations. Once this agreement is signed, the applicant can begin construction and its operations. Once the construction is completed, the applicant can apply for a permanent industrial license

KIZAD is the perfect symbol of Abu Dhabi Vision 2030 being applied. It is set to become the foremost industrial zone of the region and has managed to attract industries that have the foresight to be a part of the tremendous growth it promises. The development of KIZAD has paved the way for investors who will be at the forefront of long term growth and sustainable government investment. KIZAD also offers the foreign investor to have extended property rights in the region which is another advantage. It is expected that KIZAD will be the industrial powerhouse that is needed by the Emirate of Abu Dhabi to turn their dream of diversified economy into a reality.