The authorities in the Kingdom have just nabbed an Arab origin expatriate under the Anti Commercial Concealment Act. This man had been running an establishment which subsequently had 10 retail watch outlets. The authorities moved in on the expatriate after receiving a tip off from a citizen who lodged a complaint that the expatriate was violating the law. In accordance to an official at the MCI or Ministry of Commerce and Industry and the inspectors had found that this expatriate had been running a business under the name of a Saudi Citizen and that the Arab and the expatriate had a previous understanding and an agreement.
The authorities have described this as a clear violation of the Anti Commercial Concealment Law and they have referred the case on to the Bureau of Investigations and the Public Prosecution Authority, the case will also be referred to the Bureau of Grievances which will be giving the final judgment on the case. If the expatriate is found guilty of violating the law, he may be subjected to a prison term of 2 years and an additional fine of SAR 1 million. Subsequently the commercial license held by the accused party will also be suspended for a time period of five years and the convicted expatriate will also have to face deportation as and when his jail term has been completed.
During the course of the inspection of the sites, the inspectors from the MCI also found several papers and documents which clearly prove that the expatriate man had been managing the shops and acting as the owner of the establishment while he was also operating their finances and bank accounts. This is clear violation to the provisions of the Anti-Commercial Concealment Act. In accordance to the Anti Commercial Concealment Law each and every foreign investor as well as Saudi citizen who allows any non Saudi individual to conduct business on their account will be termed as a criminal. This can be done if they allow the use of their trade license, trade name or the commercial registration in any way.
The very first article in the Anti Commercial Concealment law clearly states that under no circumstances is it allowed for any Non Saudi individual to invest or participate in any activity, unless and until he has been authorized to do so under the Foreign Investment Law applicable in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Even though such acts are in clear violation to the law, people have been doing so for a long time, and have also been caught doing so. It is unclear as to how these people think they can evade the authorities and continue operating a business illegally in the Kingdom. Expatriates usually come to the Kingdom in search of better employment and opportunities, hence it is unthinkable that a person could do such a thing and jeopardize his employment and future in the Kingdom as he will be surely deported back to his native country.
Source: Arab News
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