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Dubai Establishes Virtual Assets Regulator

 |  March 13, 2022

Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid said the country has adopted its first law governing digital assets and established an agency to regulate the sector, Reuters reported Wednesday (March 9).

Mohammed, who also serves as the vice president and prime minister of the United Arab Emirates, the federation of seven emirates, has advocated for the development of virtual asset regulations. It’s mission, the UAE has said, is to attract business as the region’s economic competition increases.

The new measure, the Dubai Virtual Asset Regulation Law, is intended to position the UAE and Dubai, the region’s business center, as a regional and global destination for the sector, Mohammed said in a statement.

A new agency, the Dubai Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority, was created to supervise the development of a business environment for virtual assets in terms of regulation, licensing, and governance, he added.

Learn More: The Global Challenge of Digital Asset Regulation

Last fall, the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA), the financial regulatory agency of the special economic zone, the Dubai International Financial Centre, unveiled its initial rules for digital tokens. This week, the DFSA launched a consultation on regulation for crypto tokens, which includes crypto currencies.

Dubai joins a wave of efforts in major jurisdictions to begin addressing the rise of cryptocurrencies and other digital assets in recent months, as their use and value has exploded.

This week, President Joe Biden signed an executive order to establish a government-wide policy on cryptocurrencies and other digital assets. In the announcement, the White House said 16% of the population, or 40 million Americans, use or have used cryptocurrencies.

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