The United Arab Emirates (UAE) Securities & Commodities Authority has opened up its doors to crypto firms looking to set up offices in the country. According to a press release issued by the regulator on Monday, all companies in the crypto sector, including brokers, custody providers, trading platforms and other service providers will need to apply for approval from the Securities & Commodities Authority. The regulator has been given authority over the sector and will oversee the licensing of crypto firms.

Companies that operate in Dubai, one of the seven emirates that make up the UAE, must also apply for a license from the Dubai Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority (VARA) in addition to being approved by the national regulator. This move is part of the UAE’s effort to expand the use of crypto in trade as it seeks to diversify away from a reliance on US dollars. Earlier this year, the UAE’s state minister for foreign trade, Thani Al-Zeyoudi, said that crypto will play a major role for UAE trade going forward, and that global governance when it comes to cryptocurrencies and crypto companies is important.

To obtain a license, crypto firms will need to demonstrate “efficiency and operational flexibility,” as well as meet certain operational standards. The move by the UAE’s Securities & Commodities Authority comes as no surprise as Dubai has achieved a reputation as one of the most crypto-friendly jurisdictions in the world, attracting crypto companies such as the world’s largest crypto exchange by volume, Binance.

Last year, Binance announced that it had opened “three offices in Dubai” as well as one in the UAE’s capital of Abu Dhabi after securing the necessary licenses to operate there. It is also known that Binance’s CEO, Changpeng Zhao, spends a significant amount of his time in Dubai. The move by the UAE’s regulator is expected to further boost Dubai’s reputation as a crypto-friendly jurisdiction and attract more crypto firms to the country.


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