February 25, 2024
Sheikh Mohammed

With the vision to rebuild the city of Dubai into a model of a futuristic approach and the best in the world for living, working, and exploring, his Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of UAE, and the prominent Ruler of Dubai has issued a new law, numbered (9) of 2023 that would regulate driverless vehicles in the emirates. 

This law was announced last Friday and gives out a framework to regulate autonomous vehicles operation by providing a regulatory environment. This aims to enhance the smart mobility transformation in Dubai and attracts more eminent investments in the automobile and transportation sector, according to a statement released by the office of Sheikh Mohammed.  

New Law For Autonomous Cars

This new law for autonomous cars in Dubai states that the Dubai Road and Transport Authority (RTA) would be solely responsible for developing the strategic approach with plans and policies to regulate the functioning of autonomous vehicles in the emirate. 

Along with this, RTA has also been tasked to establish the operational, technical, and safety measures and benchmarks for it. And to identify the various categories of autonomous vehicles

They will also be responsible for marking off the areas, roads, and routes where these autonomous vehicles would operate, developing the proper infrastructure, and setting the speed limits that are required to commence this operation. 

In addition to this, the law states that all relevant government bodies in Dubai need to cooperate with RTA in order to deliver responsibilities more promptly, for the autonomous vehicles sector. 

Though, it has been clear that provisions of Federal Law No. (21) of 1995 Concerning Road Traffic would continue to apply in those areas which are not covered by the special provisions of this new law. 

However, if any provisions of other laws turn out to be conflicting with the new law, then they will be annulled. 

The commencement of this law No. (9) of 2023 is scheduled for 90 days after its formal publication in the Official Gazette.

Conditions Required For Issuing License 

The Office of Dubai Media has also released certain conditions required to issue the license, mandated by the Director General and Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of RTA, which is essential for any activity related to autonomous vehicles. 

Such conditions include the clearing of RTA’s technical test and knowledge of technological capability for reading and road signs. 

Also, it specifies the duties of agents, operators, and passengers related to autonomous vehicles and outlines the procedure for license states that, in case of any accidents, operators are responsible for covering the damages.

Regulation For Sale And Transfer 

Under this law, the regulations for the sale and transfer of autonomous vehicles in the city of Dubai have also been given. It gives the sole authorization of the sale and transfers through authorized agents. Also, the transfer from one operator to another can only be made after approval from RTA.

In case, any violates the terms specified in the law, they would be fined between AED500 to AED20,000. It would be doubled in case of repetitions in the same year and the maximum fine can exceed AED50,000.

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