Abu Dhabi to fine unlicensed influencers starting July 1

Estimated read time 2 min read

Picture for illustrative purposes only. ARCHIVE

Social media influencers practicing without a licence in Abu Dhabi will be fined starting on July 1, according to the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED).

The authority said that fines range between Dh3,000 and Dh10,000, and businesses or companies engaging with unlicensed influencers may be shut down.

In Abu Dhabi, influencers need to apply for a permit from ADDED in order to practice advertising services or promote products and services. The permit costs Dh1,250 for individuals and Dh5,000 for businesses.

According to ADDED, business and social media influencers can submit a request for licences and permits through the unified digital platform TAMM by accessing the ADDED Services and selecting the activities they wish to engage in, including advertising services on e-platforms.

Foreigners outside the country can obtain a licence to practise advertising services, provided they have an Emirates ID card or a UAE Unified Number.

Government companies are also required to apply for a permit in order to deal with influencers or practice advertising services via electronic platforms. Companies based outside Abu Dhabi must also obtain a permit from ADDED in order to practice the activity in the emirate.

According to ADDED, having a permit from the UAE Media Council does not exempt social media influencers from obtaining the necessary licences and permits from ADDED to practise advertising services via electronic platforms.

The department stated that there are currently 543 licences for practising advertising services on electronic platforms and social media, with the number expected to increase after the decision comes into effect.

The department emphasised that non-compliance with regulations and conditions when contracting with influencers and social media sites will result in penalties and fines. PIA/Expat Media

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