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Abu Dhabi regulates logistics sector

The development is part of Abu Dhabi Freight Master Plan, which comprises 56 recommendations across nine themes. (Image source: Skybeacon/

Abu Dhabis department of transport (DOT) has directed more than 3,500 freight transportation firms to submit names of transport manager or in-charge of drivers and provide details on their existing fleet for securing a no objection certificate (NOC)

The new regulation, which aims at boosting the level of safety for freight transportation, is supposed to be a quantum leap for freight licensing compared to procedures and regulations that have been adopted in the past.

The DOT, in collaboration with the Abu Dhabi department of economic development, has developed and implemented new requirements for the NOC for road transport commercial licenses, which went into implementation phase on 20 October 2015.

In Phase One, the department is seeking information on key people to open communication lines for an effective enforcement so that they can be informed of new guidelines, rules and directions in future, said Ali Fahad Al Nuaimi, director of commercial relations at the department of economic development (DED) in Abu Dhabi.

The development is part of Abu Dhabi Freight Master Plan, which comprises 56 recommendations across nine themes. Freight division's five-year plan focuses on 13 priority actions, added Ahmed Al Hammadi, the director of freight transportation, at DOT.

The new trade registration procedures that have come into effect for land freight transportation will be applicable on all operators of all sizes as well as on anyone seeking to obtain a trade license for freight transportation. It will help create an effective freight governance framework, which will target minimum standards for a logistics firm to operate. The minimum standard would encourage fairer operating environment and improved industry image, which will lead to greater investments.

Jonathan James, sector head freight policies at department of transport, said, "The new regulation would lead to a level playing field for the logistics industry, who complains of competition from firms in unorganised sector." 

Such regulations would encourage more investments into the logistics sector, he added. "We aim to ensure a smooth transition into a more active, safer and better freight transportation sector that will benefit all stakeholders."

In future, the DOT plans to request further information from freight operators in Abu Dhabi. This information includes details of truck maintenance, driver management system and register archiving. Operators can get information by logging onto website or visiting business centre at DED.

To date the department has had no requirements for road freight operators relating to commercial licenses. He said applications for NOCs for these commercial license types are approved automatically.