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UAE’s Efforts To Prevent Money Launderers Using Charities

Author: Nicola Sharp  20 October 2021

In its latest bid to combat money laundering, the UAE is devising a law that will increase regulation of charity fundraising and donations.

The legislation, which is to be called the Fundraising Regulatory Law, –will apply to non-government organisations that seek funds in the country.

Nasser Ismail, the UAE’s assistant undersecretary of Social Welfare at the Ministry of Community Development, has said the law will be part of the country’s ongoing attempts to tackle money laundering and the financing of terrorism. He added that the law will set out conditions and regulations for licensed charitable and humanitarian authorities within the UAE, in order to “ensure the safety, security and stability of the community’’.

Under regulations already in place, money can be donated to humanitarian causes through registered charitable organisations. Anyone looking to raise funds needs the approval of the General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowments at national level or the Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities Department in Dubai.

The UAE has been increasingly keen recently to improve its anti-money laundering efforts.  With the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) having warned in a report that charities are being used for money laundering and tax evasion, the country’s latest move should come as no surprise. It is yet another example of the UAE’s drive and dedication to combat money laundering and adhere to international standards.

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Nicola Sharp


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Nicola is known for her fraud, civil recovery, arbitration and business crime expertise, her experience of leading the largest financial disputes and multinational investigations and her skills in devising preventative measures and conducting internal investigations for corporates.

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