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Foreign Investment

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The long-awaited Saudi Franchise Law will take effect on 22 April 2020 and will apply to all franchises operating wholly or partly within the Kingdom, including franchise agreements entered into before the effective date of the Law (with certain provisions not applying to pre-existing agreements) and including those between foreign franchisors and local franchisees.

On 10 October 2019, the European Union (EU) agreed to remove the United Arab Emirates (UAE) from their list of non-cooperative tax jurisdictions (the EU blacklist). This followed from the introduction of the Economic Substance Regulations (ESR) in the UAE in March 2019, and more recently, the specific Guidance on the ESR (the Guidance) published by the UAE Ministry of Finance in September 2019.