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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 24 January 2021

UAE consumer Q&A: Can I import a banned book or film?

Does each emirate have its own consumer authority?

Can I obtain a copy of a movie that is not available in the UAE, for example, 50 Shades of Grey? Will I be prosecuted if I bring it into the country from abroad?

The censor board of the UAE has a right to ban films or books that may be harmful to the cultural and religious sanctity of the UAE. Usually you have to read the decision carefully because sometimes the ban is only to show the film in public, but you can watch it in private places, such as your home, so the most important thing is to check the decision itself to understand the specific situation.

I received several phone calls from a bank to inform me that they offer a free credit card, but I turned down the offer. A few days later Aramex called me to deliver the card, what action can I take?

You may file a complaint to the Central Bank against the bank that sent the credit card. You also have an option of refusing to accept the Aramex delivery. A bank cannot push their clients to accept the offers, but if you accept the credit card and use it, you cannot take action against the bank.

Is there a consumer authority in the UAE that residents can approach with complaints? Or does each emirate have its own consumer authority?

Each emirate has its own department or consumer authority where a complaint can be filed, although all consumer departments are connected to the Ministry of Economy. It is also recommended to visit to file a complaint in the UAE. The information available on the website is very helpful to understand what documents are required to file a formal complaint. There are separate links and websites for each emirate. This information is easily available on the internet and may be accessed at any time.

If you have a question for our lawyer, please email it to with the subject line ‘Consumer Q&A’.

Published: June 3, 2015 04:00 AM