Abu Dhabi expands reach of food truck licensing

Abu Dhabi’s parking authority is to commence issuing food truck licenses for a range of locations beyond Abu Dhabi island, creating opportunities for small and medium businesses

Dubai food truck sensation Moti Roti.
Dubai food truck sensation Moti Roti.

The Abu Dhabi Integrated Transport Centre’s parking division (Mawaqif), has issued the first permits for food trucks beyond Abu Dhabi Island to areas including Al Raha Beach, Saadiyat Island, the Abu Dhabi – Dubai main road and Al Falah and Al Garm areas.

The operation of food trucks is strictly controlled in the UAE, with business requiring permits for each specific location from Mawaqif for every separate location in which they would like to operate.

Mohammad Al Muhairi, GM for Mawaqif, noted that the expansion of the licensing scheme would “generate fresh investment prospects for individuals as well as small and medium size firms to invest in this field and have presence in strategic locations and key outposts outside Abu Dhabi Island”.

Food truck operation is a rapidly growing segment in the UAE – so much so that in Dubai a number of dedicated facilities have been built to support the industry, which is also creating a demand for niche vehicles capable of supporting cooling and heating facilities.

Mawaqif further stated that the number of permits granted in each location would be limited and dependent on the capacity of the area and whether or not such activity is required.

A map has to be submitted showing the locations approved by the Abu Dhabi Police, and a permit is required to be issued in respect of each truck linked to a valid commercial license.

Under the scheme, the names of licensed business entities will have to be displayed on all affiliated vehicles and a number for complaints has to be shown in a prominent position.

A no objection certificate (NOC) must also be issued from the landlord and the truck must not stay overnight in the location to avoid filing an offence.

The permit covers the offering of non-alcoholic beverages, juices, icy refreshments and snacks as per specifications approved by the relevant licensing bodies.

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