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UAE Implements New Telemarketing Regulations to Protect Consumers and Enhance Market Integrity

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UAE Telemarketing Resolutions: Ensuring Consumer Protection and Market Integrity

The United Arab Emirates has introduced comprehensive regulations to govern telemarketing activities, aiming to enhance consumer protection and maintain economic and social stability. The Ministry of Economy, in collaboration with various authorities, will oversee the implementation of these resolutions. Key aspects include obtaining approval for telemarketing, prohibiting unauthorized marketing calls, and setting strict guidelines for conduct and transparency.

Overview of New Regulations

Implementation and Oversight

The Ministry of Economy, in coordination with the Telecommunications and Digital Government Regulatory Authority, the Central Bank of the UAE, the Securities and Commodities Authority, and local licensing authorities, will enforce the new telemarketing resolutions. Each entity will operate within its jurisdiction to ensure compliance.

Key Provisions for Companies

– Approval Requirement: Companies must obtain prior approval for telemarketing activities. Unauthorized marketing calls are prohibited.

– Consumer Comfort and Privacy: Regulations emphasize consumer comfort, privacy, and adherence to approved marketing channels and times.

– Transparency and Integrity: Companies must be transparent, avoid deceptive practices, and limit calls to specific hours and frequencies.

– Automated Dialing Systems: Permitted with conditions such as obtaining approval, using authorized local phone numbers, and maintaining communication channels for interested consumers.

– Record Keeping: Companies must keep records of marketing calls in a prescribed format and disclose marketing activity data to authorities.

Conduct and Complaint Mechanisms

– Professional Conduct: A code of conduct for telemarketers is mandatory, including identifying themselves and disclosing data sources.

– Consumer Consent: Marketers must obtain consumer consent before making calls.

– Complaint Resolution: Consumers can lodge complaints about unwanted calls, which will be handled by authorities through established procedures.

Penalties for Non-Compliance

– Corporate Violations: Fines range from AED 10,000 to AED 150,000 depending on the violation, with stricter penalties for repeated offenses.

– Individual Violations: Fines for unauthorized marketing calls by individuals range from AED 5,000 to AED 50,000, with possible disconnection and telecom service bans for repeat offenses.

Regulatory Authority and Enforcement

– Telecommunications and Digital Government Regulatory Authority: Can impose penalties on natural persons violating the resolutions.

– Central Bank: Oversees marketing calls for banking and financial services, ensuring compliance with specific regulations.

Types of Violations and Penalties

1. Failure to Obtain Prior Approval:

   – First Instance: AED 75,000

   – Second Instance: AED 100,000

   – Third Instance: AED 150,000

2. Marketing to Consumers on DNCR List: Up to AED 150,000

3. Deception and Misleading Marketing: AED 25,000 – AED 75,000

4. Marketing with Unregistered Numbers: Up to AED 75,000

5. Other Violations: AED 10,000 – AED 150,000

Conclusion

The UAE’s new telemarketing resolutions signify a significant step towards safeguarding consumer rights and ensuring ethical marketing practices. By enforcing strict regulations and penalties, the UAE aims to create a transparent, consumer-friendly market environment.

Al Kabban & Associates is here to help businesses navigate these new regulations and ensure full compliance. Contact us today for expert legal advice tailored to your specific needs. Follow us on social media for more updates on everything law related in the UAE: @AlKabban_Law

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