A new Code of Market Conduct, which has identical standing to formal Guidance contained within the Dubai Financial Services Authority (“DFSA”) Rulebook, came into force on 1 January 2015.

The Code is intended to clarify the DFSA’s interpretation of the market abuse provisions contained in Part 6 of the Dubai International Financial Centre (“DIFC”) Markets Law and so assist in determining whether or not certain conduct or market practices are likely to amount to market abuse. The Code will therefore be of relevance to anyone (whether based in the DIFC or not) whose conduct might affect DIFC markets or the users of those markets.

The introduction of the Code follows the DFSA’s consideration of responses to Consultation Paper 98, which set out a draft of the (then) proposed Code together with an explanation of its purpose (http://dfsa.complinet.com/en/display/display.html?rbid=1547&element_id=21955).

There have been a number of relatively small changes to the text of the draft Code in the final version, perhaps the most notable of which is found in the additional wording contained in Chapter 6.6 of the final version. This wording clarifies the DFSA’s view, in keeping with that of the UK’s FCA, that if information is of a kind which a reasonable investor would be likely to use as the basis of an investment decision, then the “significant effect on price” element of determining what constitutes inside information will automatically be satisfied.

The full text of the new Code of Market Conduct, together with the instrument enacting it, can be found on the DFSA’s website at the following link: http://dfsa.complinet.com/en/display/display.html?rbid=1547&element_id=22028