Dubai Courts and DIFC Courts Release Their 2011 Annual Report
WAM Dubai, 7 May 2012: Dubai Courts have released their annual report in a shared ceremony with the DIFC Courts. During the event, which was attended by a number of judges and dignitaries, both parties exchanged annual reports to underline their strategic partnership. Dubai Courts' representation was led by Dr. Ahmed Saeed Bin Hazeem Al Suweidi, General Manager; while the DIFC Courts' delegation was headed by their Chief Justice, Michael Hwang.
Dubai Courts' Annual Report consists of two sections, the first section exhibits and explains the judicial and administrative structure at Dubai Courts, in addition to highlighting The Judicial Council in the Emirate of Dubai, Dubai Courts' Leading Team and The Strategic Changing Team in the Judicial Sector. The report also includes Dubai Courts' Strategic Plan (2009-2011), the projects and initiatives carried out to achieve the strategic goals - covering both the initiatives and programs executed to enhance the trust of customers and stakeholders in the Judicial System as well as those executed to increase the internal effectiveness and efficiency, and to attract and develop highly qualified and motivated human capital.
The Report's first section also highlights the developments and changes at Dubai Courts in 2011, including the Awards Received by the Dubai Courts and the Dubai Courts Excellence Awards 2011 - 6th session. It also details Dubai Courts' participations in local and international conferences and Forums.
The 2011 Annual Report also covers the Dubai Courts' future direction, including the activation of Dubai Courts' Centre for Amicable Settlement of Disputes (Economic Department), the inauguration of the new Civil Court building in Al Garhoud area (due to launch by the end of 2012) and accelerating the electronic transition of Dubai Courts through expanding Notary Public online transactions to cover 60 electronic services. This, in turn, aims to help the UAE to improve its rank in The Global Competitiveness Report (published annually by the World Economic Forum) through improving its score in the "Efficiency of legal framework in settling disputes" indicator.
The second section of Dubai Courts' Annual report includes the KPIs related to judicial works and KPIs related to administrative works (detailed separately). These indicators show a 7.5% drop in civil cases recorded in 2011, with a total of 55311 cases (compared to 59833 cases in 2010) and also a 9% decrease in criminal cases, (with 41973 cases in 2011 dropping from 46160 cases in 2010). In contrast, the case clearance ratio in all three courts has improved by 17% year-over-year, with the clearance ratio of civil cases stable at the same level as 2010 and a 26% increase in clearance ratio of criminal cases.
Dr. Ahmed Saeed Bin Hazeem, Dubai Courts' General Manager, emphasised that the 2011 annual report contained the information and data that comprehensively covered the judicial and administrative activity at the courts, clearly validating Dubai Courts' commitment to the goals and objectives behind this report. One of the most important objectives of the report was to maintain the high level of transparency that has been honoured throughout the Courts' second strategic plan (2009-2011) which has now reached its conclusion.
This plan, according to Dr. Bin Hazeem, has been rich with strategic goals and objectives and covered a wide range of development projects and initiatives. However, numerous challenges and changing variables in the internal and external work environment resulted in widely differing outcomes, from positive results that were a testament to the successful efforts in executing and delivering projects, initiatives and programmes, to some negative outcomes that show the difficult and complex challenges that Dubai Courts faced last year.
"2011 was no different from previous years in terms of the abundance and diversity of activities related to one of our most important strategic objectives: Human Capital development," Dr. Bin Hazeem asserted. "And so we have organised numerous focussed programmes to invest in, develop and elevate our human capital, including several productive activities aiming to promote staff loyalty and a variety of efforts to support our first objective -which is improving the society's confidence in the judicial system. These efforts have materialised through activities demonstrating the distinguished quality that characterises all elements of judicial work at Dubai Courts." "Moreover, Dubai Courts went beyond the local stage in its efforts to enhance the trust in judicial system. We also welcomed several international delegations and organised multiple activities to build and foster the international community's confidence in Dubai's judicial system. As for our second objective, to focus on improving internal operations, we have mainly worked on expanding the use and accessibility of digital technology in judicial transactions." Dubai Courts' general manager also noted the new layout of this year's annual report and the improvements in information presentation as a step forward in improving the quality of this publication and delivering the best services for all stakeholders in the judiciary across the UAE.
Finally, Dr. Bin Hazeem commended the abiding collaboration and strategic partnership between Dubai Courts and DIFC Courts which have resulted in substantial success -a testament to the ardent efforts of both parties. He also highlighted that the coordinated release of their annual reports confirmed the high level or cooperation and collaboration between the judicial bodies.
Sharing the same opinion, Michael Hwang, Chief Justice of DIFC Courts, confirmed: "The DIFC Courts are proud of their on-going and close relationship with the Dubai Courts. Working together, we can maintain a solid, clear and assuring judicial environment for businesses in Dubai. We regularly share public platforms, such as our recent Dubai Chamber of Commerce seminar, to discuss the provision of justice in Dubai and the UAE. More importantly, we work closely behind the scenes to share best practices and ensure consistency. We are also pleased to have welcomed an intern on attachment from Dubai Courts for the month of March.
"We benefit in many ways from this collaboration - not the least from the exchange of ideas it provides. This partnership ensures the highest standard of justice in Dubai and it is through understanding and valuing each other that we can maintain a 100% mutual enforcement track-record." WAM/MMYS