AMENDMENTS TO DIFC REGULATORY LAW 2004 COME INTO FORCE

Amendments aimed at simplifying and improving the structure for Dubai Financial Services Authority (the "DFSA") regulatory decisions and for appeals against those decisions came into force on Thursday, 21 August 2014.  Under the change, the DFSA must follow specified procedures designed to ensure its decisions are fair and reasonable.  The changes further strengthen the DFSA's supervisory and enforcement powers in line with international practice.  A new provision has also been introduced which prohibits misleading, deceptive, fraudulent or dishonest conduct related to financial products or services in the Dubai International Financial Centre (the "DIFC").

DIFC Law No. 1 of 2014 amending the DIFC Regulatory Law 2004 can be found here.

GLAXOSMITHKLINE FACES FRESH BRIBERY CLAIMS IN SYRIA

Pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline ("GSK") faces allegations that it bribed Syrian doctors and officials to boost sales of its medicines.   In response, GSK has suspended its relationships with distributors in Syria, pending the outcome of the investigation.  The new claim against GSK follows a series of similar bribery claims against GSK in China, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Poland.

SAUDI MUNICIPALITY WORKERS ARRESTED FOR US$ 1.7M BRIBERY SCAM

The National Anti-Corruption Commission (Nazaha) of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has announced that several employees at the Eastern Province Municipality have been arrested on charges of accepting bribes, as well as forging and manipulating documents in return for approving property development applications.

REPORT ON WORLD CUP BIDDING FINALISED

Michael Garcia has delivered a 350-page report following a year-long investigation into the bidding processes for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.  The report is unlikely to be made public and the adjudicatory chamber of Fifa's ethics committee will ultimately decide whether, and what, disciplinary action should be taken.  Details on the report are scarce, but the BBC has reported that conclusions have been reached concerning further action with respect to certain individuals.