United Arab Emirates minister of state for foreign trade says that cryptocurrency will play a major role in UAE trade going forward. He stated: “The most significant thing is to ensure global governance in the development of cryptocurrencies and crypto companies.”
Thani Al Zeyoudi, the United Arab Emirates Minister of State for Foreign Trade, discussed cryptocurrencies with Bloomberg in Davos on Friday.
The UAE is interested in expanding its cryptocurrency sector, he noted, adding:
“Crypto will play a major role for UAE trade going forward.”
“The most important thing is that we ensure global governance when it comes to cryptocurrencies and crypto companies,” Al Zeyoudi described.
“We started attracting some of the companies to the country with the aim that we’ll build together the right governance and legal system, which are needed,” the official noted.
Omar Sultan Al Olama, UAE Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy, and Remote Work Applications, also talked about cryptocurrency regulation last week in a World Economic Forum session titled “Finding the right balance for crypto” in Davos. He confirmed that no crypto exchanges have been licensed in the UAE, emphasizing that the regulatory frameworks for cryptocurrencies in the UAE are “not light.” The minister said:
“UAE has not issued a single licensed crypto exchange in UAE, neither Binance nor FTX … no one was able to onboard any customers even last week.”
Dubai Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA), established in March, also states on its website that it has not granted any operating permits to date. UAE law requires VARA to license and regulate the crypto sector in Dubai and its free zones (excluding DIFC).
A number of cryptocurrency exchanges, including Binance, FTX, Okx, Bitoasis, and Coinmena, have received a provisional license from VARA. According to the regulator, these crypto trading platforms are currently in stage one of a four-stage approval process.
Approximately 11.4% of UAE residents own or have invested in cryptocurrencies, according to the "Digital Lifestyle" 2022 report published by the United Arab Emirates Telecommunications and Digital Government Regulatory Authority (TDRA).