General Rules and Regulations – Version 2 Page 1 of 21
International Humanitarian City
General Rules and Regulations
General Rules and Regulations – Version 2 Page 2 of 21
1 PRELIMINARY AND KEY PROVISIONS …………………………………………………………….. 3
2 INTERPRETATION ……………………………. …………………………………………………. 3
3 POWER AND GOVERNANCE OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIA N CITY FREEZONE ………………. 5
4 GENERAL PROVISIONS ………………………… ………………………………………………… 6
5 INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN CITY LEASES AND PROPER TY …………………………………. 7
6 INSURANCE ………………………………… …………………………………………………… 8
7 PRODUCTS …………………………………. …………………………………………………… 8
8 HEALTH, SAFETY AND ENVIRONMENT ……………… …………………………………………… 9
9 INSPECTION OF PROPERTY …………………….. …………………………………………….. 11
10 EMPLOYEE AFFAIRS …………………………. ……………………………………………… 11
11 TRAFFIC AFFAIRS ………………………….. ……………………………………………….. 15
12 SECURITY AND FIRE ………………………… ………………………………………………. 16
13 COMMUNICATIONS AND MEDIA ………………….. ………………………………………….. 17
14 BREACH OF GENERAL RULES AND REGULATIONS …….. …………………………………….. 17
15 TARIFFS AND SANCTIONS …………………….. …………………………………………….. 18
16 DISPUTE RESOLUTION ……………………….. …………………………………………….. 20
17 UN AGENCY PRIVILEGES AND IMMUNITIES ………… ………………………………………… 21
General Rules and Regulations – Version 2 Page 3 of 21
1 PRELIMINARY AND KEY PROVISIONS
1.1 This document is to be referred to as the General Rules and Regulations.
1.2 These General Rules and Regulations are issued in a ccordance with Article 5 of Law No.
(1) of 2012 (the IHC Law).
1.3 These General Rules and Regulations come into full force and effect on the date of
their issuance by the Authority’s Chief Executive O fficer. Subsequent amendments to
these General Rules and Regulations shall also come into full force and effect on the
date of their issuance by the Authority’s Chief Exe cutive Officer.
1.4 The purpose of these General Rules and Regulations is to set out the framework rules
and regulation with which Establishments must compl y. These General Rules and
Regulations are binding on all Establishments, and all employees and invitees of
Establishments. For the avoidance of doubt, these G eneral Rules and Regulations apply
equally to NPO Establishments, UN Agencies and Comm ercial Establishments, unless
specifically stated otherwise.
1.5 The Authority’s Chief Executive Officer may, from t ime to time, amend these General
Rules and Regulations.
2.1 Capitalised words in these General Rules and Regula tions have the meaning indicted
Authority: the International Humanitarian City Authority estab lished in accordance
with the IHC Law.
Authority’s Registration Regulations: regulations governing the registration of
Establishments in the Freezone, which are issued by the Authority from time to time.
Authority’s Licensing Regulations: regulations governing the licensing of
Establishments in the Freezone, which are issued by the Authority from time to time.
Commercial Establishment: any entity which holds a Licence to undertake comme rcial
activities in the Freezone.
Employee(s): an employee or employees of an Establishment who ar e authorized to
work in the Freezone by the Authority.
Establishment(s): any NPO Establishment, Commercial Establishment or
Intergovernmental Establishment which meets the Reg istration Requirements and holds
a Lease and a Licence to operate in the Freezone, o r any UN Agency approved by the
Authority to operate in the Freezone.
Freezone: the geographical area comprising the International Humanitarian City.
GCC: the Gulf Cooperation Council region.
Government Services Department: the Government Services Department of the
Guidelines : the guidelines governing the registration and lic ensing requirements of
new Establishments or licence renewal of existing E stablishments, which are issued by
the Authority from time to time.
General Rules and Regulations – Version 2 Page 4 of 21
Immigration Law: Federal Law No. (6) of 1973, together with any app licable
ministerial decrees, resolutions and directions as may be issued under or in connection
with the Immigration Law.
Intergovernmental Establishment: any entity which holds a Licence to undertake
activities in the Freezone. For the avoidance of do ubt, an Intergovernmental
Establishment is an agency set up by member states and established via a treaty or
charter to carry out not-for-profit activities.
Labour Law: Federal Law No. (8) of 1980, together with any app licable ministerial
decrees, resolutions and directions as may be issue d under or in connection with the
Lease: the lease agreement executed between the Establish ment and the Authority for
Licence: a Licence issued by the Authority pursuant to the A uthority’s Licensing
Licensing Requirements: the licensing requirements identified in the Author ity’s
Licensing Regulations and Guidelines.
NPO Establishment: any entity that holds a Licence to undertake not-fo r-profit
activities in the Freezone.
Operations Department: the Operations Department of the Authority.
Property: physical space within the Freezone which is leased by an Establishment from
the Authority (and which can constitute office, war ehousing, showrooms or open yard
Registration Requirements: the registration requirements identified in the Aut hority’s
Registration Regulations and Guidelines.
Relevant Authorities: any relevant Dubai or UAE Government body or autho rity having
jurisdiction in connection with any matter related to these General Rules and
Regulations or other matter connected to the Freezo ne or the Authority.
Sanctions : any punitive action that may be taken by the Auth ority in accordance with
these General Rules and Regulations or any other ru le or regulation promulgated by the
Authority, or as determined by the Authority in its sole discretion.
Sponsorship Agreement: the sponsorship agreement executed between the
Establishment and the Authority for the sponsorship of Employees.
UAE: United Arab Emirates.
UN Agency: an agency, administrative body or administrative u nit of the United
Working Day: every day that is not a Friday, Saturday or public holiday declared for
the Government sector in Dubai.
2.2 A reference to a particular law or regulation in th ese General Rules and Regulations is
a reference to that law or regulation as it is in f orce, taking account of any subsequent
amendment, extension, or re-enactment and includes any subordinate legislation made
under it, from time to time.
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2.3 References in these General Rules and Regulations to time periods are to be construed
in accordance with the Gregorian calendar. Whenever these General Rules and
Regulations reference a period of time, unless spec ifically referencing a Working Day,
such period will include every calendar day, except that:
2.3.1 When the last day of the period falls on a Friday or a Saturday, the period will
end instead on the following Sunday; and
2.3.2 When the last day of the period falls on a Dubai pu blic holiday for the
Government sector, the period will end instead on t he next day that is not a
Dubai public holiday for the Government sector.
2.4 Unless the context otherwise requires, any referenc e in these General Rules and
Regulations to a “person” includes a reference to a natural person, and to a corporate
body, limited liability company, association or par tnership and to the legal or personal
representatives, legal successors and lawful assign s of any such person.
2.5 A person who wishes to submit an original document or a photocopy of a document
written in a language other than English or Arabic must also submit a notarized
translation of that document in English or Arabic, prepared by a translation service
acceptable to the Authority. Certain classes of doc uments may be submitted
electronically if approved by the Authority.
2.6 In the event of any inconsistency in these General Rules and Regulations or between
these General Rules and Regulations and any other a pplicable law or regulation
(whether issued by the Authority or otherwise), the Authority will determine the
correct interpretation and each Establishment shall be so bound.
3 POWER AND GOVERNANCE OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN CITY FREEZONE
3.1 In accordance with the IHC Law, the Authority pursues the following objectives:
3.1.1 establishing a hub for providing humanitarian aid in emergency situations and
for disaster relief and to enable Establishments to achieve their objectives;
3.1.2 inviting, attracting and licensing Establishments s pecialised in providing
humanitarian services in a manner that this does no t conflict with the
legislation in force in Dubai;
3.1.3 ensuring a quick and effective response in case of disasters and emergency
3.1.4 creating a favourable environment that supports hum anitarian activities.
3.2 The Freezone’s, governance structure is set out in the IHC Law and these General Rules
and Regulations will be administered in a manner co nsistent with the IHC Law.
3.3 The Authority may appoint authorised representative s as deemed necessary for the
implementation of these General Rules and Regulatio ns, who shall be empowered to
undertake any functions in these General Rules and Regulations which are designated
to the Authority.
3.4 The Authority may, but is not obliged to, waive any requirement or obligation set out
in these General Rules and Regulations, the Authori ty’s Registration Regulations or the
Authority’s Licensing Regulations, for any Establis hment or entity applying to become
an Establishment, at the Authority’s sole discretio n. Any such waiver shall be in writing
and shall be specific to the Establishment or entit y applying to become an
Establishment and shall be given or withheld on a c ase by case basis. Should the
Authority determine not to waive any requirement or obligation set out in these
General Rules and Regulations, the Authority’s Regi stration Regulations or the
Authority’s Licensing Regulations, the Authority’s decision shall be final and binding
and the Authority shall not be required to give rea sons.
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4 GENERAL PROVISIONS
4.1 The Freezone accepts applications for Licences from international humanitarian actors,
as well as from commercial companies, to encourage non-profit and commercial
entities to share best practices to increase their operational efficiencies and improve
4.2 In order to become an Establishment, an entity must meet the following three criteria:
4.2.1 Meet one of the following requirements:
(a) Be validly registered with the Dubai Economic Depar tment, or equivalent
authority in any other Emirate (if the Establishmen t is a local branch of a
(b) Be validly registered with the Authority in accorda nce with the Authority’s
Registration Regulations; or
(c) Be validly registered and incorporated in a jurisdi ction outside the UAE (if
the Establishment is a branch of a foreign entity);
4.2.2 Hold a Licence (with the exception of a UN Agency); and
4.2.3 Hold a Lease.
4.3 All Licences shall be issued pursuant to these Gene ral Rules and Regulations and the
Authority’s Licensing Regulations (and any other re lated rules or regulations issued by
the Authority). An Establishment should pursue obje ctives in relation to the
humanitarian and/or emergency relief fields but the Authority will accept applications
for a Licence from entities that do not offer servi ces in these fields, provided that the
entity has a connection to the humanitarian and/or emergency relief fields. Such
applications will be considered on a case by case b asis and approved at the Authority’s
sole discretion. Registration and Licensing Guideli nes may be made available to
entities applying to become an Establishment or to Establishments and such
Registration and Licensing Guidelines (if any) may be amended from time to time by
4.4 All entities and individuals working or operating i n the Freezone, including all
Establishments, visitors and contractors working fo r an Establishment, are required to
comply with these General Rules and Regulations and any other related rules or
regulations issued by the Authority. Any non-compli ance by any Establishment may be
subject to Sanctions in accordance with these Gener al Rules and Regulations.
4.5 An Establishment must have a Lease for a Property w ithin IHC and a Licence (issued in
accordance with the Authority’s Licensing Regulatio ns) to operate in the Freezone. UN
Agencies registered in the Freezone are exempt from obtaining Licences to operate
within the Freezone, provided they have obtained th e Authority’s written approval to
operate in the Freezone.
4.6 Payment for services or applications to be processe d by the Authority must be made in
advance, unless otherwise approved or specified by the Authority. All payments to the
Authority shall be in accordance with the tariff at the end of these General Rules and
Regulations, or as specified in any other rule or r egulation promulgated by the
Authority. All tariffs may be subject to change fro m time to time without notice.
4.7 UAE and Dubai laws, decrees and regulations are app licable within the Freezone unless
otherwise prescribed in these General Rules and Reg ulations, other regulations
promulgated by the Authority or as specified in any UAE or Dubai laws. Any conflict
between Freezone rules and regulations and the laws of the UAE or Dubai shall be
determined by reference to UAE or Dubai laws. Any v iolation of UAE and Dubai laws,
decrees or regulations shall be notified by the Aut hority to the Relevant Authorities.
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4.8 Without limitation to these General Rules and Regulations, all Establishments must
comply with the rules and conditions applicable to Establishments that are set out in
the IHC Law.
4.9 The Authority’s office hours are from 8:00am to 4:0 0pm daily from Sunday to
Thursday. Any applications and documents will be ac cepted by the Authority up to
3.30pm but no applications or documents will be acc epted after this time. During the
holy month of Ramadan the Authority’s office hours may change and such change shall
be notified to Establishments.
4.10 Any violation of these General Rules and Regulation s will be subject to Sanctions
including the suspension of an Establishment’s oper ations within the Freezone, in
accordance with the provisions of Section 15, or as determined by the Authority.
4.11 All Establishments shall deliver a copy of their certified auditor’s report specific to the
operation of the Establishment within the Freezone (duly signed by the certified
auditors) to the Authority within three (3) months of the end of the calendar year, or
where the financial year of the Establishment diffe rs to the calendar year, within three
(3) months of the end of the financial year, provid ed this is not less than once per
calendar year, unless otherwise approved by the Aut hority.
4.12 Commercial Establishments are permitted to open a b ranch outside the Freezone
provided the Commercial Establishment first obtains :
4.12.1 All required approvals from all Relevant Authorities; and
4.12.2 Written approval from the Authority, which may be withheld at the
Authority’s sole discretion without the need to giv e reasons.
5 INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN CITY LEASES AND PROPERTY
5.1 With the exception of approved UN Agencies, an Establishment must execute a valid
Lease before being entitled to hold a Licence. The Establishment must, at all times,
comply with the terms and conditions of each Lease, including the payment of rent to
the Authority in accordance with the Lease.
5.2 In accordance with the Revocation, Cancellation or Suspension of a Licence article in
the Licensing Regulations, the Authority reserves t he right to repossess any Property
upon expiration or termination of the Establishment ’s Lease and Licence, if such Lease
or Licence is not renewed or cancelled (as appropri ate).
5.3 Establishments wishing to erect signboards on their Property must notify the Authority
and seek the Authority’s approval. The design, size , colouring and location of the
signboard must be approved by the Authority prior t o manufacture and erection.
5.4 Sub-leasing and sharing of any Property is not perm itted without the Authority’s prior
5.5 Without limiting the terms of any Lease, in the eve nt an Establishment’s Licence or
Lease is terminated or expires, it is the responsib ility of the Establishment to ensure
that the Property is fully vacated, including:
5.5.1 The removal of all furnishings and equipment to ens ure that the Property is
cleaned and restored to its original condition;
5.5.2 All waste material is appropriately and correctly d isposed of; and
5.5.3 Compliance with any other direction or notice issue d by the Authority.
5.6 If the Establishment abandons goods on the Property , the Authority shall issue a notice
to the Establishment of the Authority’s intention t o treat such goods as “abandoned”.
A specified date for clearance of the abandoned goo ds will be given in the notification.
If the abandoned goods have not been removed by tha t date specified in the notice,
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the Authority will act to remove them without further reference to the Establishment.
The Establishment shall be liable for any costs inc urred by the Authority in doing so
and the goods shall become the property of the Auth ority.
5.7 Upon obtaining the written approval of the Authority, Establishments may rent storage
area(s) within the UAE but outside the Freezone how ever Establishments may only use
such storage area(s) for storage. Establishments ar e not permitted to conduct any
other activities out of such storage areas, includi ng without limitation, the provision of
any services or the conduct of any trading activiti es.
6.1 Establishments must provide the Authority with evid ence that they have taken out the
following insurance policies within twenty (20) Wor king Days of the Establishment’s
Licence issue date or Lease commencement date or in the case of renewal of any
Licence or Lease, evidence that the Establishment h as renewed the following insurance
policies at the time of renewal of the Licence or L ease:
6.1.1 Third Party Liability (or public liability) insurance in respect of death or injury
of any third party or damage to property of any thi rd party; and
6.1.2 Workmen Compensation Insurance in accordance with t he Labour Law and the
Sponsorship Agreement for all employees sponsored b y the Authority, in the
amount of AED 500,000 per occurrence and in aggrega te. The values listed in
this Section must be for any single occurrence, and there shall be no limit in
the insurance policy as to the number of occurrence s; and
6.1.3 Property All Risk Insurance to cover the internal f ixtures and fittings of the
Establishment’s Property and all other assets conta ined at the Property.
6.1.4 Any other insurances specified in the Lease, Sponso rship Agreement or other
agreement between the Establishment and the Authori ty or in any other rule or
regulation promulgated by the Authority or any Rele vant Authority.
6.2 The Authority may at its sole discretion waive any of the insurance requirements under
6.3 The insurance policies required under this Section must be maintained by the
Establishment for the duration of the term of its L icence, Lease and/or Sponsorship
Agreement and must note the date of expiry of the p olicy. Any amendments or
endorsements to any of the insurance policies must be notified to the Authority within
20 working days of such event.
6.4 A copy of the insurance policies required to be mai ntained under this Section must be
forwarded to the relevant department of the Authori ty.
6.5 The Authority will not be liable for any loss or damage to an Establishment’s contents,
due to any reason whatsoever, including theft or na tural calamities or resulting from
any act or omission of the Authority.
7.1 All Establishments must comply with the following g eneral restrictions:
7.1.1 With the exception of food or beverage vendors spec ifically approved by the
Authority, retail trading is only allowed in the Fr eezone with the prior written
approval of the Authority on a case by case basis p rovided such retail trading is
7.1.2 Manufacture of any items is strictly prohibited wit hin the Freezone unless
approval in writing, in advance, is obtained from t he Authority; and
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7.1.3 All activities must be in compliance with the Establishment’s Licence and
restricted to the Property unless approved otherwis e by the Authority.
7.2 All Establishments must comply with the following m arketing restrictions:
7.2.1 All Licences issued by the Authority will only be v alid in the Freezone.
Establishments cannot display or sell their product s directly outside of the
Freezone. Any activity undertaken by the Establishm ent outside of the
Freezone must be undertaken in accordance with the laws of the UAE and
Dubai and the Establishment must be licensed by the Relevant Authority to
undertake such activities;
7.2.2 Potential customers may visit the Property of an Es tablishment for the purpose
of viewing goods; and
7.2.3 The restrictions in this Section do not apply to tr ade exhibitions which are
approved by the Relevant Authority in the UAE or Du bai. Establishments may
themselves display and sell their products at such trade exhibitions in the same
way as any other foreign company but Establishment’ s must obtain the
Authority’s prior written approval.
7.3 In accordance with Article 16 of the IHC Law, all E stablishments are exempt from
customs duty on all imports (including apparatus, m aterials, goods and products) which
are necessary for the Establishment to perform its approved activities. In addition,
where an Establishment is exporting any product, it must comply with the following
7.3.1 Goods manufactured in one GCC country which are exe mpt from import duty in
another GCC country, must be clearly marked with:
(a) The name of the manufacturer; and
(b) The name of the country of manufacture;
7.3.2 The information required under this Section can be included by:
(a) Printing directly onto the product;
(b) Use of adhesive labels;
(c) Printing on the wrappers of individual items of foodstuff; or
(d) Stitched labels; and
7.3.3 Where the Establishment will be exporting any goods and will be claiming an
exemption from import duty, a ‘Certificate of Origi n’ must be obtained from
the UAE Ministry of Economy or the Dubai Chamber of Commerce.
7.4 Establishments must abide by all regulations stipulated by UAE sea, air and land port
8 HEALTH, SAFETY AND ENVIRONMENT
8.1 Establishments must comply with the following rules :
8.1.1 Paved ground in front of or behind any Property, corridors between offices of a
Property and open areas between plots of land, are not to be used for the
placement or storage of equipment, waste, or other items;
8.1.2 With the exception of food or beverage vendors spec ifically approved by the
Authority, cooking is not permitted in any Property ;
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8.1.3 In the event of an Employee suffering any contagious illness, food poisoning or
serious accident, the Establishment must:
(a) Immediately report the incident to the Operations D epartment;
(b) Within two (2) Working Days of the illness or accident, present a written
report to the Operations Department, in accordance with any procedures
promulgated by the Authority from time to time, giv ing the Employee’s
name, identity number, address and nationality. The report must also
include a brief account of the circumstances of the illness or accident and
a note of any medical aid provided; and
(c) Maintain records of any illness or accident adverse ly affecting any
8.1.4 Establishments who are using contractors within the Freezone should ensure
that all contractors abide by the Authority’s safet y and security rules
promulgated by the Authority from time to time. A c opy of the safety and
security rules must be collected from the Operation s Department;
8.1.5 Use of containers for any kind of storage outside a Property, without the
Authority’s written approval on a case-by-case basi s, is not permitted;
8.1.6 Containers and portable cabins must not be used as office, mess hall,
accommodation blocks for Employees, or any other pu rpose that may endanger
health and safety, create potential fire or environ ment hazard, or which may
affect the aesthetic look of the Freezone; and
8.1.7 The Establishment shall not be permitted to utilise vacant outdoor spaces
within the Freezone as a place to store empty conta iners or portable cabins
under any circumstances.
8.2 If the Authority is notified of any illness or acci dent under this Section, the Authority
shall then notify the Dubai Police, or other Releva nt Authority, of the accident or
illness if the Authority determines that such notif ication would be appropriate.
8.3 If an Establishment fails to comply with any health , safety or environment rules or
regulations promulgated by the Authority from time to time, the Authority may, at its
discretion, take one of the following steps:
8.3.1 Apply any of the Sanctions set out in Section 15;
8.3.2 Where there is the threat of immediate, or actual, danger to health, safety or
the environment, the Authority will issue a “Prohib ition Notice”, which
requires the Establishment to immediately cease all operations until such time
as the required remedial action has been implemente d by the Establishment,
to the satisfaction of the Authority;
8.3.3 Where there is the threat of potential or actual da nger to health, safety or the
environment, the Authority will issue a “Correction Notice”, which specifies
the necessary corrective action to be taken by the Establishment and the
required completion date. The Authority will monito r implementation to
ensure that the Correction Notice is complied with. Provided that the
necessary corrective action is undertaken by the Es tablishment by the required
completion date, normal operations of the Establish ment can continue; and
8.3.4 Where the Establishment commits minor violations wh ich do not pose a
potential or actual danger to health, safety or the environment, the Authority
will notify the Establishment of the violation and request that the
Establishment take corrective action. If there is a persistent failure by the
Establishment to remedy minor violations, the Autho rity will issue a “Warning
Notice”, which specifies the necessary corrective a ction to be taken by the
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Establishment and the required completion date. The Authority will monitor
implementation to ensure that the Warning Notice is complied with. Provided
that the necessary corrective action is undertaken by the Establishment by the
required completion date, normal operations of the Establishment can
9 INSPECTION OF PROPERTY
9.1 The Authority may inspect any Property from time to time to ensure compliance with
these General Rules and Regulations, any applicable Lease conditions or for any other
purpose detailed in this Section, at any time witho ut prior notice (but to the extent
possible with prior notification and consultation w ith the relevant Establishment). The
Authority may inspect any Property for the followin g purposes
9.1.1 To inspect any work or building activities being un dertaken by the
9.1.2 To examine any process or object causing the discha rge of any unusual,
noxious or offensive substance, noise or smell;
9.1.3 To examine any process or object that may threaten or does threaten health,
safety or the environment;
9.1.4 To apply tests, take samples, conduct experiments a nd generally make
enquiries as deemed necessary or proper in order to confirm compliance with
these General Rules and Regulations and any other a pplicable laws or
9.1.5 To confirm that the terms of the Sponsorship Agreem ent, or any other
agreement executed between the Establishment and th e Authority, are being
complied with; and
9.1.6 To confirm that the Establishment’s activities comp ly with the Licence.
9.2 The Authority may request documentation pertaining to the Establishment’s
Employees, activities and finances and the Establis hment must comply with that
request within the time specified by the Authority or, if no time is specified, a
9.3 The Establishment must make available all necessary facilities leased, owned or
controlled by the Establishment in the Freezone for entry, inspection, examination and
testing, when requested by the Authority.
9.4 Inspections of any Property by any outside organisa tion (with the exception of the
Relevant Authorities and with prior notification to the Authority) are strictly
prohibited, unless the Authority gives its prior wr itten approval. Any Establishment
being approached by any unauthorized party to inspe ct any Property or request
information about the Property must notify the Oper ations Department immediately.
10 EMPLOYEE AFFAIRS
10.1 Establishments must comply with the following Emplo yee guidelines:
10.1.1 All Establishments must notify the Authority of the names of Employees that
are authorised to communicate with the Authority, a nd legally bind the
Establishment, in respect of all administrative and other matters. The names
of such authorised Employees shall be recorded on a n “Authorisation Form”
which shall be completed and signed by the Establis hment and shall be
retained by the Government Services Department. Any changes to the
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authorized Employees should be immediately notified to the Authority in
writing and a new Authorisation Form should be comp leted;
10.1.2 The Establishment must ensure that all Employees ha ve travel documents and
passports which are acceptable for entry into the U AE, prior to any application
being submitted to the Authority or otherwise for a UAE visa;
10.1.3 The Establishment must pay in advance to the Author ity the costs associated
with any passes, permits, and/or visas issued in re spect of Employees or
visitors, in accordance with the tariffs provided i n these General Rules and
Regulations or as specified in any other rule, regu lation or guidelines;
10.1.4 Any Establishment wishing to claim a refund for a s ervice or application which
has been cancelled or rejected (either by the Estab lishment or by the
Authority or other Relevant Authority) must apply i n writing to the Government
Services Department within six (6) months of the da te of payment. Details
must include the receipt number issued by the Autho rity, the name of the
Employee for whom the service was applicable (if an y) and the date on which
the original payment was made. The Authority will p rovide the Establishment
with a refund, subject to any deduction for expense s incurred by the
Authority, including administrative expenses. The A uthority’s decision on the
amount to be refunded is final and is to be determi ned by the Authority at its
sole discretion; and
10.1.5 All Employee records must be retained by the Establ ishment for at least five
10.2 Establishments must comply with the following Emplo yee sponsorship guidelines:
10.2.1 Subject to Article 10.2.3, the Establishment must e nter into a Sponsorship
Agreement with the Authority to sponsor Employees w ho are to be employed
by the Establishment to work in the Freezone. An Es tablishment must at all
times comply with all terms and conditions containe d in the Sponsorship
Agreement and any applicable provisions in these Ge neral Rules and
10.2.2 Employees sponsored by the Authority may only work in the Freezone but they
may live in and move freely within the UAE;
10.2.3 Provided that the Authority gives its prior written approval, Establishments can
employ Employees not sponsored by the Authority, te mporarily or
permanently, where the Employee:
(a) is a UAE or GCC national;
(b) is a female sponsored by a relative to work in the UAE;
(c) is an employee of a parent company or affiliate com pany of the
Establishment which is registered and licensed in t he UAE;
(d) is a volunteer not being paid by the Establishment, including interns and
work experience placements; or
(e) is an employee of a UN Agency permitted to operate in the UAE who holds
a diplomatic identification card; and
(f) in respect of all Employees listed in paragraphs (a ) to (e) above, if
required under UAE law the Employee must hold a val id UAE National ID
Card, the costs and penalties associated with such UAE National ID Card to
be the sole responsibility of the Establishment;
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(g) in respect of all Employees listed in (d), the Establishment must submit to
the Authority a Volunteer Undertaking Letter in the format specified by
10.2.4 The Establishment must in respect of all Employees, whether sponsored by the
Authority or not, obtain an appropriate Member Card (as defined in Article
10.3) from the Authority so that the Employee may f reely enter and leave the
10.2.5 The Authority cannot guarantee the acceptance of vi sa applications by the
Relevant Authorities, and is not required to provid e the Establishment with
justification and reasons for any rejection, nor re fund the associated costs of
any application made by the Establishment, where an application for a visa is
rejected. Any refund shall be processed pursuant to Article 10.1.4;
10.2.6 An Establishment must not employ a person, whether temporarily or
permanently, who is not sponsored by the Authority or approved in writing by
10.2.7 Any person working for an Establishment who is not sponsored by the Authority
or approved in writing by the Authority shall not b e recognised by the
Authority as an Employee for the purposes of these General Rules and
10.2.8 The Authority has the right (but not the obligation ) to utilise the powers
granted to it under the IHC Law to confirm the stat us of persons working for
the Establishment and any other persons found in a Property or otherwise in
the Freezone, at the invitation of an Establishment .
10.3 Establishments must obtain the following Member Car ds for all Employees working,
volunteering or interning in, or persons visiting, the Freezone:
10.3.1 Member Cards – following any internal approvals car ried out or required by the
Authority, including in the case of a replacement M ember Card, a successful
Dubai Police clearance, all Employees will be issue d with a Member Card by
the Authority which provides a unique identificatio n for each Employee. The
Member Card serves as a permit to work in the Freez one, allows access into
the Freezone and is also a source of identification that can be used instead of
the Employees’ passport. If a Member Card is lost, then a replacement Member
Card cannot be issued without a Dubai Police cleara nce;
10.3.2 Temporary Member Card – a temporary Member Card may be issued to an
Employee in the following circumstances:
(a) Upon the Employee’s arrival in the UAE (until the M ember Card is ready);
(b) Upon withholding of the Employee’s passport by any Relevant Authority
(until the passport is returned);
(c) In the event of loss of the Member Card (until a re placement is issued); or
(d) To Employees not sponsored by the Authority and who have been
approved to work on a temporary basis for an Establ ishment in the
10.3.3 Member Cards will be issued to:
(a) Female Employees, not sponsored by the Authority, b ut who are
sponsored by a relative;
(b) An employee of a UN Agency permitted to operate in the UAE;
General Rules and Regulations – Version 2 Page 14 of 21
(c) Employees who are employed by a parent company or affiliate company
of the Establishment which is registered and licens ed in the UAE; and
(d) Volunteer Employees not being paid by the Establish ment, including
interns and work experience placements; and
10.3.4 All Member Cards referred to in this Section must b e obtained in advance from
the Government Services Department. The Establishme nt must ensure that all
Member Cards are returned to the Government Service s Department
immediately at the termination or expiry of the emp loyment, internship of
volunteering of any Employee.
10.4 Visitors Pass – Visitors Passes will be issued to a ll contractors and visitors to the
Freezone and no visitor may access the Freezone wit hout first obtaining a Visitor Pass.
Visitor Passes may be collected from the security g uards and the visitor or contractor
should provide all required information to security , including appropriate
identification, and if required, vehicle registrati on. The Establishment must ensure
that all Visitors Passes are returned to the securi ty guards at the time any visitor or
contractor exits the Freezone. The Establishment sh all be liable for the cost of any lost
or unreturned Visitor Pass and the visitor shall no t be permitted to leave the Freezone
unless the Establishment acknowledges paying such c ost.
10.5 Establishments must comply with the following proce ss in order to confirm the
employment of an Employee:
10.5.1 Establishments wishing to employ any Employee pursu ant to the Sponsorship
Agreement are responsible for the following costs i n advance to the Authority:
(a) Cost of processing the entry permit for the propose d Employee;
(b) Cost of air ticket from the proposed Employee’s poi nt of origin to Dubai;
(c) Cost of processing the proposed Employee’s visa and Member Card;
(d) Any other costs notified by the Authority to the Establishment relating to
the sponsorship or employment of the proposed Emplo yee or set out in
the Sponsorship Agreement; and
(e) If the Establishment is not a NPO Establishment, a bank guarantee or
company cheque in accordance with the Sponsorship A greement;
10.5.2 Under no circumstances may the Establishment charge the costs identified in
this Section to the proposed Employee or deduct the costs from the
10.5.3 If there is no mandatory employment contract specif ied by the Authority, the
Establishment may enter into any form of employment contract with its
Employees, including the template employment contra ct that may be provided
by the Authority from time to time (if any), provid ed always that the
employment contract, including employment condition s such as hours of work,
end of service benefits and holiday leave entitleme nts, are in compliance with,
or provide more generous benefits than as specified in, the terms and
conditions of the Labour Law and applicable regulat ions promulgated by the
Authority from time to time. If the Employee is emp loyed under the
Sponsorship Agreement, the Authority may, but is no t obliged to, specify a
mandatory employment contract that must be used for all such Employees;
10.5.4 The Authority may monitor the Establishment and its Employees, and request
records from the Establishment, to ensure that the Establishment observes all
applicable laws and regulations, as well as the Spo nsorship Agreement; and
General Rules and Regulations – Version 2 Page 15 of 21
10.5.5 The Establishment shall submit any proposed Employee’s entry permit,
passport and employment contract, within five (5) W orking Days of arrival of
such Employee in the UAE, to the Government Service s Department.
10.6 Where the Establishment intends to terminate the em ployment of any Employee or
implement disciplinary action in respect of any Emp loyee, the Establishment must
notify the Authority within ten (10) Working Days o f the termination or action being
taken. The following information is to be provided to Government Services
Department, which must be signed by the Establishme nt’s authorized person:
10.6.1 Name and Member Card number of the Employee;
10.6.2 Date of offence; and
10.6.3 Disciplinary action taken or grounds for termination.
10.7 The Authority may request further clarification or information in respect of any
Employee or the Sponsorship Agreement and the Estab lishment must respond within
forty eight (48) hours.
10.8 Any abscondment (unexplained absence) of an Employe e that continues for seven (7)
consecutive Working Days must be notified by the Es tablishment to the Government
Services Department, within five (5) Working Days i n writing. The Authority will then
notify the Relevant Authorities.
10.9 If requested by the Authority, the Establishment mu st return the passport of any
Employee to the Authority for cancellation of the E mployee’s visa.
10.10 Where an Establishment has entered into a Sponsorsh ip Agreement, the Government
Services Department may provide, at the written req uest of the Establishment, a salary
certificate comprising the following information:
10.10.1 The name of the Establishment;
10.10.2 The name of the Employee; and
10.10.3 The monthly salary of the Employee, provided the in formation is consistent
with that information held for the Employee by the Government Services
10.11 In the resolution of any labour disputes that may a rise:
10.11.1 The Labour Law and any regulations promulgated by t he Authority shall apply;
10.11.2 The Authority shall not be responsible for the resolution of any labour disputes
arising between an Establishment and an Employee bu t all labour disputes
must first be referred to the Authority in order to escalate such dispute to
formal dispute resolution;
10.11.3 In the event of a labour dispute arising between an Establishment and an
Employee, the Authority will, at the request of the Establishment or the
Employee, issue a letter on behalf of the Authority referring the dispute to the
Ministry of Labour. The Ministry of Labour may, in turn, refer the matter to the
10.11.4 No labour dispute may be referred directly to eithe r the Ministry of Labour or
the Dubai Courts without being first referred to th e Authority, who may refuse
to make a reference at its sole discretion; and
10.11.5 The Authority shall implement any decision or order of the Ministry of Labour
or the Dubai Courts with respect to a labour disput e.
11 TRAFFIC AFFAIRS
General Rules and Regulations – Version 2 Page 16 of 21
11.1 Establishments must comply with the following general traffic rules:
11.1.1 The roads in the Freezone must be treated as public roads and all UAE and
Dubai road rules must be complied with;
11.1.2 Any driver, operator of a vehicle or equipment, inc luding those whose
operations are confined to the Establishment’s Prop erty, must be in possession
of a valid licence issued by the UAE Ministry of In terior and / or the Dubai
Roads & Transport Authority and suitable for the cl ass of vehicle or equipment
being driven or operated;
11.1.3 All vehicles and equipment must be appropriately re gistered and licensed, as
required in order to legally be used or operated in the UAE and Dubai;
11.1.4 Vehicles shall not be parked outside the Property u nless parked in a nominated
parking area. Any parking violations may incur sanc tions or fines imposed by
the Operations Department; and
11.1.5 Movement of goods within the Freezone shall be done by an Establishment
directly, or by any UAE registered transportation c ompany.
12 SECURITY AND FIRE
12.1 Establishments must comply with the following gener al security and fire rules:
12.1.1 The Operations Department is responsible for the sa feguard of personnel and
property within the Freezone area and for authorisi ng all movement of vehicles
and personnel into and out of the Freezone. In the event of any Establishment
becoming aware of any fire, theft, or other violati ons of security, the
Establishment shall immediately notify the Operatio ns Department in the first
instance. Where appropriate, the Operations Departm ent shall in turn, notify
or involve the Dubai Police or the Dubai Civil Defe nce, or any other Relevant
12.1.2 All vehicles and personnel moving in and out of the Freezone are required to
have an appropriate pass or card, in accordance wit h Section 10;
12.1.3 For security reasons, the Establishment must inform the Operations
Department in writing about any shift working arran gements outside of normal
12.1.4 Vehicles entering and exiting the Freezone may be s ubject to a search or
security check at the various entry and exit gates to the Freezone;
12.1.5 Establishments who lease any Property must ensure t hat a second key is lodged
with the Operations Department, and in the event th at locks are changed a
second key for the changed locks must be lodged wit h the Operations
12.1.6 Establishments must provide the contact details of their nominated Employee
to the Operations Department, who shall be the cont act point for the
Establishment in the event of fire, burglary or oth er incident;
12.1.7 For any serious traffic violation occurring within the Freezone, the Operations
Department may notify the Dubai Police for them to take appropriate action.
For minor offences not involving accidents, the Ope rations Department shall
issue a warning to the offending driver and Establi shment;
12.1.8 Firearms and weapons are not allowed in the Freezon e. Any violations will be
notified to the Relevant Authority;
12.1.9 The Operations Department shall implement appropria te fire preventive and
fire control measures in accordance with any regula tions and practices
General Rules and Regulations – Version 2 Page 17 of 21
promulgated by the Authority from time to time. Establishments can obtain a
copy of fire related procedures from the Operations Department (if any);
12.1.10 Establishments must comply and cooperate with any d irections by the
Authority in respect of installing or maintaining a dedicated telephone line for
the fire protection system, and all costs of instal ling and maintaining such
telephone line will be paid for by the Establishmen t; and
12.1.11 Fire-fighting personnel are authorized by the Autho rity to take full control of a
fire-fighting situation. Where an Establishment’s P roperty is unmanned,
unguarded, closed or locked, fire-fighting personne l are authorised to make
forced entry where there is reasonable justificatio n (including a subsequent
false alarm discovery), and / or where failure to d o so could result in
significant losses to any Establishment, the Author ity or other third party.
13 COMMUNICATIONS AND MEDIA
13.1 All Establishments are requested to submit to the A uthority annual activity reports on
or before the first Working Day of February of each calendar year detailing their
activities and accomplishments as per the format sp ecified by the Authority from time
to time. The Authority reserves the right to use su ch information in its marketing
collaterals and communication tools to highlight th e strengths and benefits of the
Authority and its member Establishments.
13.2 All Establishment wishing to conduct fundraising ac tivities must notify the Authority
three (3) months in advance in writing in order to obtain the Authority’s approval or
otherwise and receive any required assistance and t o obtain any required approval of
the Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities Depar tment (IACAD) of Dubai Government.
13.3 Establishments wishing to conduct awareness and or public social activities in the UAE
should notify the Authority in writing three (3) mo nths in advance of the event, where
the Authority’s sponsorship or patronage is require d. If the Authority’s sponsorship and
patronage is not required, the notice should be pro vided to IHC in writing one (1)
month in advance of the event. Events related to hu manitarian emergencies are
exempt from these notice periods but notice in writ ing should be given to the
Authority as soon as possible.
13.4 Establishments are not allowed to announce fundrais ing or awareness campaigns
through any communication tool without first obtain ing the approval of the Authority.
13.5 Establishments are not allowed to publish any news or information related to the
Authority or the Freezone without obtaining approva l from the Authority on the
content of the news or information to be published.
13.6 Establishments are not allowed to install any marke ting collaterals in common areas
within the Freezone without obtaining written appro val from the Authority.
13.7 Establishments must state on all official written c ommunications that they are a
member of the Freezone (whether such communication is in paper format or
electronic, sent by facsimile or email, or by couri er or post).
13.8 If an Establishment repeatedly violates this Sectio n the Establishment will be subject
to Sanctions by the Authority.
13.9 Establishments must not enter into any contractual arrangement that is related to or
makes provision for any fundraising or humanitarian activities, including non-binding
contractual arrangements or memorandum of understan dings, with any Dubai or UAE
entity, without first obtaining written approval fr om the Authority which may be
withheld at the Authority’s sole discretion.
14 BREACH OF GENERAL RULES AND REGULATIONS
General Rules and Regulations – Version 2 Page 18 of 21
14.1 Where any act or omission of an Establishment causes the Authority to incur any cost
or expense for which the Authority is not liable, w hether under these General Rules
and Regulations or other laws or regulations applic able in the Freezone, the
Establishment shall be liable to reimburse the Auth ority for such cost or expense upon
receiving an official invoice from the Authority de tailing the cost or expense incurred.
14.2 When an Establishment breaches these General Rules and Regulations, the following
general principles shall apply:
14.2.1 Ignorance of these General Rules and Regulations sh all not excuse any breach
of these General Rules and Regulation;
14.2.2 An Establishment in breach of these General Rules a nd Regulations shall be
guilty of an offence which, if capable of remedy, m ust be remedied to the
satisfaction of the Authority within the timeframe required by the Authority;
14.2.3 If an Establishment is in breach of these General R ules or Regulations or any
other rule or regulation promulgated by the Authori ty, the Establishment shall
be liable to the Authority for the Sanctions as spe cified in Section 15 or
elsewhere in these General Rules and Regulations or any other rules or
regulations promulgated by the Authority, or such o ther sanctions the
Authority may consider necessary from time to time.
15 TARIFFS AND SANCTIONS
15.1 The following table sets out the tariffs applicable in the Freezone:
All amounts are in AED subject to change without an y notification
Registration Fee Tariff
NPO Branch ( one time) 1,000
Commercial Branch (o ne time) 1,000
New Commercial Co. FZ -LLC ( one time) 15,000
Members Transaction Fee
Converting Commercial Branch to FZ -LLC 8,000
Transfer of Shares 2,300
Change of Share C apital (increase or decrease) 1,200
Amalgamation of FZ -LLC 1,500
Notarization of Board Resolution 150
Notarization of Memorandum of Association 100
Notarization of Articles of Association 100
Amendment of Memorandum of Association 200
Notarization of Signature Specimen 50
Attestation of True Copy 50
NOC Issuance 50
VAT Exemption Letter 100
Certificate of Good Standing / Incumbency Letter 1,700
De – Registration FZ -LLC 5,000
NPO / Intergovernmental Branch (p er annum per activity from one
Commercial Branch ( per annum per activity from one segment) 6,500
Commercial Licen ce for FZ -LLC (p er annum per activity from one
Adding ac tivity from different segment ( per annum) 2,000
General Rules and Regulations – Version 2 Page 19 of 21
Change of Manager 400
Change of Establishment name 400
Re -issuance of licen ce or any amendment in licen ce 400
Licen ce Cancelation 1,500
Licen ce Renewal Delay F ee
Late renewal licence fee (per month) 500
Note: All above rates / fees are subject to availability of space
15.2 Without limiting any other Article in this Section, in the event the Authority
determines that it would be appropriate to apply a Sanction to any Establishment for
any breach of these General Rules and Regulations o r any other regulation promulgated
by the Authority, the following procedure shall be followed (subject to the provisions
of Article 15.8):
15.2.1 The Authority shall issue a warning letter notifyin g the Establishment of the
breach and a time period for rectifying the breach;
15.2.2 If the breach continues after the period specified in the warning letter, the
Authority may issue a second warning letter notifyi ng the Establishment of the
continuation of the breach and a time period for re ctifying the breach (noting
there is no obligation for the Authority to issue a second warning letter in the
event of serious breaches); and
15.2.3 If the breach continues beyond the period specified in the original warning
letter or second warning letter (if issued), the Au thority may elect to take any
or all of the following actions, for a period to be determined by the Authority
in its sole discretion:
(a) Suspend any services being provided by the Authorit y to the
(b) Notify other Relevant Authorities of the breach and advise that services to
the Establishment be suspended;
(c) Prevent all Employees from having access to the Pro perty and cancel any
access or other cards issued to the Employees;
Facility Management Fee & Services
Facility related rental charges, services fees (Per Square Meter Per Annum)
Office space for NPO Establishment AED 430
Office space for Commercial Establishment AED 807
Office space for NPO Establishment at warehouses AED 270
Office space for Commercial Establishment at wareho uses (showrooms) AED 380
Warehouse space for NPO Establishment AED 270
Warehouse space for Commercial Establishment AED 380
Open yard space AED 3
Utilities and Services AED96
Rent Deposit (10% of total annual
One reserved covered parking per 50sqm of leased area for each Establishment. Extra covered parking
is subject to availability at an additional cost.
General Rules and Regulations – Version 2 Page 20 of 21
(d) Cancel all or some of the visas for Employees; and / or
(e) Terminate the Establishment’s License and / or Leas e in addition to
repossessing the Property.
15.3 The Authority reserves the right to ban the entry o r exit of goods, Employees or visitors
of Establishments, where the Authority considers su ch a ban necessary. Except in the
case of a serious breach, the intention to impose a ban will be notified to the
Establishment in writing by the Authority and a per iod to remedy the breach will be
specified. Once imposed, a ban will not be lifted u ntil the breach has been rectified to
the satisfaction of the Authority.
15.4 The Authority reserves the right to disconnect the electricity supply to any Property
when any accounts payable to the Authority or to DE WA are not paid by the
Establishment within the prescribed period. A re-co nnection charge will be payable by
the Establishment before supply is restored.
15.5 When an Establishment breaches the terms of its Lic ence, the Authority reserves the
right to take additional measures without notice, i ncluding closure of the
Establishment’s operations if the unauthorised acti vities are of a very serious nature
(a) Violation of any health, safety or environment rule s or regulations
promulgated by the Authority that threaten the heal th or safety of any
(b) Violation of any UAE or Dubai law or regulation, in cluding and rules or
regulations issued by any Relevant Authority applic able to the
Establishment’s activities, which threaten the heal th or safety of any
15.6 In the event an Establishment breaches any health, safety or environment rules or
regulations promulgated by the Authority, the follo wing general principles shall apply:
15.6.1 In the event of any unauthorised dumping of any sub stance whatsoever within
the Freezone, an Establishment will be sanctioned a nd in all cases the dumped
substance must be cleared, either by the offending Establishment or by the
Authority, who will charge the Establishment accord ingly; and
15.6.2 The Authority may apply a Sanction without notice f or serious violations of any
health, safety or environment rules or regulations promulgated by the
Authority. In order to ensure fairness of judgment and apportionment of
blame, the Authority shall conduct an investigation into the circumstances
leading to the violation but the Authority’s judgme nt following any
investigation will be final and not subject to revi ew.
15.7 Any costs incurred by the Establishment in respect of any action taken pursuant to this
Section 15 shall be payable by the Establishment on the first written demand of the
Authority and in the event the Establishment fails to make payment of the demanded
sum, the Authority may recover such demanded sum by other means, including
encashing any bank guarantees or deposits being hel d by the Authority.
15.8 The Authority reserves the right to amend or vary or depart from the provisions of this
Section 15 and impose (or not impose) Sanctions as the Authority may determine in its
16 DISPUTE RESOLUTION
16.1 Any dispute or difference that arises out of or is related to these General Rules and
Regulations or any other rule or regulation promulg ated by the Authority, shall be
determined by reference to the Authority in writing in the first instance. The
Establishment must set out full details of its disp ute or difference and provide such
General Rules and Regulations – Version 2 Page 21 of 21
further information as reasonably requested by the Authority. The Authority shall
consider the dispute or difference and will provide a written response within forty (40)
Working Days of receipt of all information reasonab ly required by the Authority. The
Establishment and the Authority shall act in good f aith to amicably resolve any dispute
or difference within forty (40) Working Days of the Authority’s written response.
16.2 Subject to Article 16.3 and 16.4, if the dispute or difference cannot be resolved
amicably by reference to Article 16.1, or if the Au thority has a claim against an
Establishment, the dispute or difference shall be r eferred to and finally resolved by
the Courts of Dubai.
16.3 Any dispute or difference arising between an Establ ishment and the Authority may be
finally resolved by reference to arbitration under the Rules of the Dubai International
Arbitration Centre in Dubai following the execution of a valid arbitration agreement by
the Establishment and the Authority. For the avoida nce of doubt, the Authority shall
have no obligation to enter into any such arbitrati on agreement and the election to do
so shall be at the Authority’s sole discretion.
16.4 If the Establishment is a UN Agency and if the disp ute or difference cannot be resolved
amicably by reference to Article
16.1, or if the Authority has a claim against a UN
Agency, the dispute or difference shall be referred to and finally resolved by
arbitration under the Arbitration Rules of UNCITRAL in Dubai.
17 UN AGENCY PRIVILEGES AND IMMUNITIES
17.1 Nothing in or relating to these General Rules and R egulations or any other rule or
regulation promulgated by the Authority shall be de emed a waiver, express, or
implied, of any of the privileges and immunities of the UN Agencies including the
privileges and immunities enjoyed by them pursuant to the 1946 Convention on the
Privileges and Immunities of the United Nations, th e 1947 Convention on Privileges and
Immunities of Specialised Agencies, customary inter national law, other relevant
international or national agreements and under dome stic law.
17.2 Subject always to Article 17.1, if the exercise of any right or performance o f any
obligation by the Authority, whether under these Ge neral Rules and Regulations or any
other rule or regulation promulgated by the Authori ty, is likely to, or does, contravene
any privilege or immunity applying to any UN Agency , the affected UN Agency must
notify the Authority as soon as reasonably practica ble in writing.