• Chapter 1 Chapter 1 – Introduction

    • Introduction

      1.1 This Decision Procedures, Disqualification and Enforcement Manual (the Manual) provides information on the policies, processes and procedures of the Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) Registration Authority in relation to the exercise of its disqualification and enforcement powers and related decision making.
      1.2 The Manual contains various policies and procedures and is intended to be both a reference for staff of the Registration Authority as well as to provide guidance to persons operating, or intending to operate, as licensed persons in the ADGM. However, the information in this Manual is general and non-binding. Decisions about particular matters or investigations are made based on the specific facts of the case.
      1.3 The Manual is not an exhaustive source of the Registration Authority’s policy and procedures on the exercise of its disqualification, enforcement and disciplinary powers and related decision making (refer to the ‘Application’ section below for further detail on the scope of this Manual).
      1.4 This Manual should be read in conjunction with ADGM’s commercial legislation, in particular, the Commercial Licensing Regulations 2015 (CLR 2015) and Companies Regulations 2020 (CR 2020). A link to ADGM’s commercial legislation is available here.
      1.5 The disqualification powers of the Registrar are set out in Chapters 9 and 10 of Part 10 of CR 2020

    • Legal Basis

      1.6 This Manual is published in accordance with:
      a. section 45 and subsection 54(5) of CLR 2015, and
      b. sections 249 and 258 of CR 2020.

    • Application

      1.7 This Manual is relevant to licensed persons in ADGM and other persons including potential applicants, advisors, directors, receivers and promotors of companies, insolvency practitioners and interested parties. The Manual sets out:
      a. the Registration Authority’s decision making procedure for giving warning notices, decision notices and supervisory notices pursuant to CR 2020 and CLR 2015 (collectively referred to as “statutory notices”);
      b. the Registration Authority’s policy with respect to exercising own initiative action to vary (narrow) the scope of a commercial licence;
      c. the Registration Authority’s policy with respect to the imposition of financial penalties under CLR 2015;
      d. the Registration Authority’s policy with respect to suspending, limiting or restricting a commercial licence; and
      e. the Registration Authority’s policy with respect to cancellation of a commercial licence.

    • Purpose

      1.8 The purpose of this Manual is to provide readers an understanding of how the Registration Authority operates in relation to the exercise of its disqualification and enforcement powers and related decision making, as well as its expectations of licensed persons and directors.
      1.9 Additionally, this Manual is intended to satisfy the requirements of section 45 and subsection 54(5) of CLR 2015, as well as sections 249 and 258 of CR 2020, where the Registration Authority must publish statements of policy and procedure regarding the matters set out in the ‘Application’ section, above.
      1.10 The Manual is publically available at www.adgm.com

    • Updating the Manual

      1.11 This Manual will be subject to periodic review and updated as appropriate in the light of any amendments to relevant regulations and changes in policy.
      1.12 In accordance with the relevant provisions of CR 2020 and CLR 2015, the Registration Authority will publish a draft of any proposed alterations or revisions for public consultation, prior to issuing updates to the Manual.

    • Defined Terms

      1.13 The terms used in this Manual, have the same meaning in CLR 2015 and CR 2020 (as applicable), unless stated otherwise.

    • Statutory Notices

      1.14 The types of statutory notices and related notices, and the principal references to them in CLR 2015 and CR 2020 are set out in Table 1, below.
      Table 1: Summary of statutory and related notices
      Notice Description Regulation reference
      Warning Notice Gives the recipient details about action that the RA proposes to take and about the right to make representations. Section 47, CLR 2015
      Section 251, CR 2020
      Decision Notice Gives the recipient details about action that the RA has decided to take. The RA may also give a further decision notice if the recipient of the original decision notice consents. Section 48, CLR 2015
      Section 252, CR 2020
      Notice of Discontinuance Identifies proceedings set out in a warning notice or decision notice and which are not being taken or are being discontinued. Section 49, CLR 2015
      Section 253, CR 2020
      Final Notice Sets out the terms of the action that the RA is taking. Section 50, CLR 2015
      Section 255, CR 2020
      Supervisory Notice Gives the recipient details about action that the RA has taken or proposes to take, for example, to vary a condition. Sections 19(4), 19(7), 19(8)(b) and 54(13) CLR 2015
      1.15 In the Manual the supervisory notice about a matter first given to the recipient is referred to as the “first supervisory notice” and the supervisory notice given after consideration of any representations is referred to as the “second supervisory notice”.
      1.16 The requirement in subsection 54(5) of CLR 2015 and in section 258 of CR 2020 to publish a statement of procedure for the giving of notices does not extend to the giving of a notice of discontinuance or a final notice. Neither of these notices is a statutory notice for the purposes of the Manual; nor is the decision to give such a notice a statutory notice associated decision.
      1.17 For a list of actions that require the issuance of a warning or decision notice, please refer to Annex 1.
      1.18 For a list of actions that require the issuance of a supervisory notice, please refer to Annex 2.