UAE minister gives green light to Uber, Careem merger

Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri, the UAE’s Minister of Economy, has issued a decision approving the upcoming acquisition of Careem by global ride hailing company Uber.

Under the Competition Law, companies operating in the UAE are required to submit a request to the Ministry of Economy regarding the status of economic concentration prior to the completion of a merger or acquisition.

This ensures that the acquisition or merger will not lead to the dominance or control of the corresponding markets in the UAE at rates exceeding the percentages stipulated by the law, state news agency WAM reported on Monday.

Uber had applied to the ministry which studied the market for Uber and Careem in relation to private taxi services that cater to regular demand and demand via telephone and smart applications.

It was found that the acquisition would not constitute a case of breach of competition, resulting in the approval of the application.

Al Mansouri said that the public transport sectors across the world are witnessing fierce competition especially in light of the progressive development of modern technologies and advanced services in mass transit and passenger transport services, and the emergence of many alternative means of non-traditional transport, including the participation of cars and self-driving techniques and many alternatives to consumers.

The integration of expertise, competencies and modern technologies ultimately serve the interests of consumers and serve the progress of the transport sector in general, the minister noted in comments published by WAM.

Al Mansouri added that the government is working in partnership with the private sector to further develop the investment climate and the business environment.

“The UAE continues to follow its open economic approach, which was recently reinforced by the issuance of the new foreign direct investment law that allows foreign investors up to 100 percent ownership in selected sectors and economic zones,” he said.

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