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Cryptocurrency in the Arab world

by Milcah Lukhanyu
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The news that United Arab Emirates (UAE) has launched a new initiative to support local cryptocurrency development and regulation is undoubtedly exciting for the industry.

The Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) confirmed earlier this week that it will become a comprehensive regulator and zone of cryptocurrencies, exchanges, operators and products.

Several other sectors could be impacted massively by this development, including the online gambling industry and professional sports organisations.

For example, you can currently play with cryptocurrency on several Bitcoin Casino platforms and there is a website that can show you how.

Cryptocurrency has also been making its mark in sports, with many professional football clubs forging lucrative links with companies in the sector.

However, there is still some trepidation amongst some businesses who are concerned about the lack of regulation for crypto firms in key jurisdictions.

The new initiative will seek to address those concerns by designing a comprehensive regulated ecosystem for the crypto sector within Dubai.

This will aim to enforce stringent standards to protect investors, implement anti-money laundering measures and combat the financing of terrorism.

The UAE’s decision to throw its weight behind cryptocurrency has already found favour with the world’s largest cryptocurrency trading platform, Binance.

The firm quickly signed a memorandum of understanding with the DWTC to help the authority in its efforts to establish a new industry hub for global virtual assets.

Binance’s move could be hugely significant given the regulatory issues the company has experienced in some major jurisdictions across the world.

The United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Japan, Germany, Italy and Poland are amongst the countries to express concerns about Binance in recent times.

This has forced them to suspend some of their services, but their link-up with the UAE could now force a rethink from regulators in those countries.

In addition to welcoming Binance on board, the UAE is also hoping to persuade several other multinational firms to relocate from Asia to the Gulf nation.

The government is in talks firms looking to set up a base in the UAE as it battles with Switzerland, Singapore and other countries to become a global crypto hub.

Investors have reacted extremely positively to developments in the UEA, with the most traded cryptocurrency in the world gaining significant ground in the market.

Bitcoin was trading at $48,331.30 on December 23, an increase of more than five percent from close of business last Friday.

Many cryptocurrency analysts have forecast the price will continue to rise, with some predicting it could top the all-time high of more than $68,000 set in November 2021.

While the percentage disparity between those two trading marks highlights the volatility of cryptocurrencies, it also demonstrates the potential it possesses.

With oil and gold becoming much less attractive commodities to Arab investors, cryptocurrencies are increasingly likely to be viewed as a viable alternative over the coming months.

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