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Your Finance: UAE Mutual Funds Rules

The bridge between finance and law is where opportunities flourish and risks are mitigated. Your money deserves the best guardian! We know that and that is why we are here with this legal blog, which is going to help you to get to know the laws that protect your investments in UAE’s mutual funds, ensuring a secure financial journey. 

Understanding the Regulatory Landscape

The UAE has taken significant steps to establish a regulatory framework for mutual funds, fostering an environment that promotes investor confidence and supports the growth of the industry. Central to this framework is the Emirates Securities and Commodities Authority (SCA), which oversees the licensing, marketing, and regulation of investment funds in the country.

UAE Mutual Funds Rules

Types of Mutual Funds

Before diving into the legal intricacies, it’s essential to understand the different types of mutual funds in the UAE:

1. Public Funds:These are open-ended or close-ended funds that target all investors, offering a range of investment opportunities in various sectors.

2. Private Funds: These open-ended or close-ended funds cater to qualified investors, offering specialized investment opportunities.

Key Regulations

Approval for Local Investment Funds:

If you plan to establish a local investment fund in the UAE, you must obtain approval from the SCA. The SCA also requires approval for the promotion and marketing of foreign funds to investors within the UAE. These regulations are put in place to ensure that investors are protected and well-informed.

Local Promoters: 

When promoting foreign funds in the UAE, the appointment of a UAE-licensed local promoter is mandatory. This ensures that investors receive the necessary guidance and information.


The Fund Regulations do not apply to funds established by government agencies, their wholly-owned companies, or foreign funds promoted to such entities. Additionally, reverse solicitation, a process where investors approach the fund rather than the other way around, is permitted.

Duration of SCA Approval

SCA approval for local investment funds and promotion of foreign funds typically has a duration of one year, and it can be renewed by submitting an application to the SCA at least one month before expiry. However, the SCA has the discretion to reject renewal applications if it is in the public interest.

Investment Restrictions for Public Close-Ended Mutual Funds

Public close-ended funds are subject to various investment restrictions, including:

– A maximum investment of 10% of the fund’s net asset value in securities issued by a single entity.

– A cap of 10% for investments in unlisted securities.

– Investment limitations in foreign markets, subject to regulatory similarity.

– A maximum of 1% of the net asset value in financial derivatives.

– Restrictions on investing in other mutual funds unless it aligns with the interests of unitholders and the fund’s investment policy.

Compliance with the laws for such types of mutual funds needs additional guidance from top legal consultants in Dubai. Reach out to them for help.

Special Types of Mutual Funds

The UAE regulations recognize different types of mutual funds, including:

– Master Funds: These are part of a group of funds affiliated with an umbrella fund, meeting specific criteria.

– Feeder Funds: They invest a minimum of 85% of their assets in the units of a public foreign fund or a public master fund.

– Umbrella Funds: These are complex structures that allow for the creation of sub-funds.

In 2017, the SCA introduced the Promotion Regulations, which complement the Fund Regulations. These regulations reaffirm the need to register foreign funds with the SCA before marketing them to investors within the UAE. Additionally, they outline rules for reverse solicitations.

Qualified Investors

To be considered a qualified investor, one must meet certain criteria. This includes government entities, international organizations, individuals with substantial income and net equity, and those represented by an SCA-licensed investment manager. These individuals and entities have the knowledge and experience necessary to assess investment offerings.

The UAE’s mutual fund regulations provide a comprehensive framework for investors and fund managers. These laws ensure transparency, safety, and fairness within the mutual fund industry. 

Consult with a qualified legal professional for specific legal guidance on mutual fund regulations in the UAE. Investors and fund managers can reach out to Law firms in Dubai for tailored guidance.