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UAE approves law to regulate strategic stock of food commodities

UAE approves law to regulate strategic stock of food commodities

The Federal Law No.3 of 2020 is aimed at organising food supplies in the event of crises, emergencies and disasters, as well as for achieving food sustainability

The UAE President, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has approved a law for regulating the strategic stock of food commodities in the country, official news agency WAM reported.

The Federal Law No.3 of 2020 is aimed at organising food supplies in the event of crises, emergencies and disasters, as well as for achieving food sustainability.

The law which outlines several measures, has also shed light on the Ministry of Economy’s authority to implement the provisions of the directive. The ministry has the jurisdiction to prepare reports, studies, statistics and the economic evaluation of food commodities, estimate consumption volumes, determine surpluses and deficits as well as prepare databases on the production and availability of food commodities in the country and countries of origin.

The ministry will also follow-up with suppliers, as well as implement sustainability and safety policies for the strategic stock of food commodities, in coordination with the National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority (NCEMA) and other relevant bodies.

Provider and registered merchant’s obligations: The law specifies setting up records of registration and classification of suppliers and merchants, as well as distributing the stock in the event of emergencies, crises or disasters.

Warehouses and storage conditions: The law obliges the registered merchant to manage the strategic stock and the warehouse by identifying the location, area and size of the store designated for commodities provided that it is based in the country. In addition, it also entails notifying authorities of the location of the store, as well as storing food commodities as per standards adopted in the UAE.

Incentives and facilities: The law specifies that it is permissible to grant incentives and facilities to the registered provider and merchant under approved regulations.

Penalties for violators: The law details various penalties that include a fine of between Dhs500,000 and Dhs2m to whoever violates the obligations specified for suppliers and registered merchants.

Further, the law stipulates that whoever violates the electronic link with the concerned authority and NCEMA to ensure the continuous follow-up of quantities, varieties and status of food stock, and also violates the preservation of food commodities will be fined between Dhs100,000 and Dhs1m.

In addition, violators of strategic commodities’ stock in the event of emergencies, crises or disasters according to distribution plans will be imprisoned and fined with a penalty of between Dhs1-5m.

In the case of repeated violations, penalties prescribed for the crimes stipulated in this law will be doubled.

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