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The ADGM Companies Regulations 2020

Afridi & Angell Legal Alert

By Danielle Lobo

The Abu Dhabi Global Market has announced amendments to its Companies Regulations. The Companies Regulations 2020 (2020 Regulations) repeal the Companies Regulations 2015 (as amended). We have summarised below the key changes under the 2020 Regulations.


Companies Regulations 2020 Effect of amendment
Section 3 One of the ways in which a restricted scope company can be incorporated is if the founding members are a group of people who are from the same family (as approved by the Registrar). What constitutes being a member of the same family has been broadened under the 2020 Regulations to include grandchildren, great grandchildren and adopted children (and their spouses).
Section 450 This section now clarifies that a financial institution which is a FinTech Participant will not be excluded from the small companies’ exemption from audit.
Part 23 (sections 778 – 783) The regulations now use the term “confirmation statement” as opposed to “annual return”. The contents of the confirmation statement and the timelines for delivery of the confirmation statement remain the same.
Section 937 The amendments to the regulations state that the Registrar will continue to authenticate paper copy documents with an official seal however the amendments clarify that electronically generated documents will not require to be sealed.
Section 940 The right to request a certificate of incorporation has been amended under the 2020 Regulations such that all certificates of incorporation will now be electronically generated as opposed to signed and authenticated by the Registrar. However, a request can still be made for a paper copy certificate of incorporation and such request may be subject to a fee as determined by the Board of Directors of the Abu Dhabi Global Market (Board).
Section 960 Continuing the theme under section 940 of the 2020 Regulations, electronic as opposed to paper copies of publicly available information on the register will be made available by the Registrar on request. If a request for a paper copy of such information is required, the provision of such information may also be subject to fees as imposed by the Board.


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Afridi & Angell’s corporate department works with many ADGM companies and has extensive experience in advising such companies. Should you have any questions with respect to the changes under the 2020 Regulations or more generally on ADGM companies, please contact the author, Danielle Lobo (partner), or your usual Afridi & Angell contact. ■

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