The Sharjah Executive Council held a virtual meeting chaired by Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Crown Prince and Deputy Ruler of Sharjah, who stressed that measures taken by the UAE government in general, and Sharjah specifically, prioritized the health and safety of citizens and residents by taking a series of steps to combat the spread of COVID-19.
Sheikh Sultan pointed out that the wise vision of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Mohamed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah in support of the smart system and investment in modern technology, has shown its effective and great consequences today under the current conditions, facilitating the work of governmental and scientific institutions, departments and bodies in Sharjah by activating the system of remote work and distance learning.
During the meeting, a stimulus package was announced to support the emirate’s economy and issued resolutions including the support of government and private entities, business sectors and individuals affected by the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
These incentives emanate from the SEC's keenness to enhance the continuity of development in various fields and mitigate the severity of economic and social impacts that the world is witnessing during this critical period. They include the following:
1. Three-month exemption from fees for economic establishments renewing their licenses from January 1, 2020 to December 31, 2020.
2. Traffic violations discount by 50 per cent and cancellation of black points committed before 3/31/2020 for a period of 3 months as of 1/4/2020.
3. Free-of-charge issuance of certificates (damage or loss) by the Sharjah Police Headquarters for a period of 3 months, as of 1/4/2020.
4. Exempting tenants of the buildings (1 and 2) of the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry of rental for a period of 3 months as of 1/4/2020.
5. Exempting tenants of Expo Centre Sharjah’s building from rental for a period of 3 months, as of 1/4/2020.
6. A 30 per cent discount to members of the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry to participate in Expo Sharjah exhibitions for the year 2020/2021.
7. Exempting the participants in the Sharjah Centre for Export Development’s permanent national industries exhibition from rental fees for a period of 3 months, as of 1/4/2020.
8. 50-per cent discount for shops, commercial centres and central markets participating in the marketing campaigns organised by the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry for the year 2020.
9. Exempting participating stores from the Central and Eastern Regions (Al Dhaid - Kalba - Khorfakkan - Dibba) from participation fees in the marketing campaigns organised by the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry for the year 2020.
10. Exempting employees of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in 101 Trade Centre from the rental fees until the end of 2020.
11. 50 per cent discount on Roads and Transport Authority violations committed before 3/31/2020 for a period of 3 months, as of 1/4/2020.
12. 25 per cent discount on rental fees for taxi vehicle numbers for a period of 3 months, as of 1/4/2020.
13. Exempting taxis and operator of the public transport network for a period of three months, as of 1/4/2020 from the following:
• Quality control fees for taxi services and the transportation network operator.
• Operating fees at Sharjah International Airport.
• Bus station rental fees for the public transport network operator and concession fees.
• Trucks and trailers from transport companies to and from Sharjah ports and the containers customs from traffic gates tariff.
14. Revoking the municipality’s approval to renew the licenses of contractors and consultants whose licenses have expired for a period of three months as of 1/4/2020.
15. Postponement of the renewal of the occupational health card for facilities subject to the supervision of the municipality.
16. Providing sanitation services for houses free of charge for a period of 3 months as of 1/4/2020.
17. Renewal of the annual subscriptions of customers in the parking service for one month for free, and compensating the customers who subscribe annually in the parking services for a period of 3 months according to the municipality's procedures.
18. Exempting the public from paying parking fees for a period of 3 months as of 1/4/2020.
19. Exempting the private sector from fees of renewing their municipal related permits for a period of three months, as of 1/4/2020.
20. Exempting hotel establishments from the municipal fees of 5per cent for a period of three months, starting 1/4/2020.
21. Suspension of all rental property eviction cases currently underway, along with executive procedures like imprisonment, blocking of bank accounts, seizure of vehicles, stocks and assets for a period of two months.
22. Deferring consideration of all current and new cases before the rental committees for a month.
23. The release of approximately 100 prisoners imprisoned on rental issues and giving them 3 months to settle their overdue amounts.
24. Exempting all commercial and wood vessels from dock dues and loading fees in Sharjah Creek, Al Hamriyah and Khor Fakkan Free Zones and creeks.
25. Reducing the fees due on port operations by 20 per cent on handling, shipping, unloading and related fees, and marine fees.
26. Exempting all bulk goods from storage fees for a period of ninety days.
27. Reducing the tariff for truck parking at Sharjah Ports by 50 per cent within the designated areas.
28. Exempting all shipping and customs clearance companies from the bank guarantees required to conduct their activities.
29. Exempting all commercial companies from inspection fees.
30. Exempting companies operating in the free zones from fines for delayed renewal of licenses.
31. Exemption from visa fines in free zones.
32. 50-per cent discount on corporate assignation of shares fees.
33. Exempting all new licenses from fees according to their commercial activities.
34. Exempting hotel establishments from the fees of the Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority, which amounts to 5per cent for a period of 3 months, as of 1/4/2020.
35. Exempting hotel establishments from the accumulated previous violations for the Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority, during the year 2019 until 3/31/2020.
36. Postponing the payment of installments for projects funded by the Sharjah Entrepreneurship Foundation (Ruwad) for a period of 3 months.
37. Potential postponing of the installments of projects funded through banks for a period of 3 months in coordination with the banks and according to the case of each project separately.
38. Exemptions for the investing sector dealing with the Department of Town Planning and Survey from the payment of contractual dues for a period of 3 months, as of 1/4/2020, according to the following target groups:
• Governmental land investors.
• Investors whose activities relate to change of use from residential to commercial.
• Investors in government parking lots.
39. Exemption of Air Arabia from Passenger Facility Charge (PFC) - Dh35 per passenger.
40. Exempting companies from aircraft parking fees - Dh100 per day.
41. Reducing the rental value of the offices of other airlines by 50per cent.
42. Reducing the rental value of warehouses and maintenance hangars by 50per cent.
43. Exemption of Initiatives related to the strategic partners of the Sharjah International Airport Authority for a period of 3 months as of 1/4/2020, which includes: - Alpha Flight Services UAE LLC, Sharjah Aviation Services, Gamma Aviation, Dufry Sharjah, SASCO)
• Exemption from collected annual fees and exclusive operating fees.
• Exempting all facilities (warehouse offices) from the annual rents values.
44. Initiatives related to the commercial activities of Sharjah International Airport for a period of 3 months as of 1/4/2020 which include: (Restaurants, exchange shops, commercial shops, banks, travel agencies, car rental companies, telecommunications companies and tourist promotion companies)
• 50 per cent reduction in rental.
• Exemption from the fees of vehicles of dealers at the airport.
45. Exempting Air Arabia from: aircraft landing fees, baggage check fees, airport entry permits, and a license renewal fee for fixed passenger airlines (annual fee) in full for a period of 3 months as of April 1, 2020.
46. Exempting the Sharjah Aviation Services Company from the fees for entry permits to the airport, and ground handling charges (annual fee) for a period of 3 months as of 1/4/2020.
47. Exempting Gamma Aviation from renewal fees for fixed passenger airlines (annual fee), and a ground handling charges (annual fee) in full from a period of 3 months as of April 1, 2020.
The Council also approved the organisational structure of the Sharjah Social Security Fund, and Dr. Tariq Sultan bin Khadem, Chairman of the Organisational Structures Committee, reviewed the details of the organisational structure and the terms of reference for organisational units, indicating that the new organisational structure serves the vision and directions of the Fund in achieving social and economic sustainability for the employees of the Emirate of Sharjah and their families, and serving upcoming generations.
The Council reviewed the annual report of Ruwad, and reviewed the Foundation's support for business leaders from small and medium enterprises in the Emirate of Sharjah. The report indicated that the Emirate of Sharjah is an attractive environment for investment and incubator of many pioneering projects in light of the kind patronage of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Mohamed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, and the follow-up by Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Crown Prince and Deputy Ruler of Sharjah, and Chairman of the Sharjah Executive Council.