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Dubai’s crypto regulator sets deadline for firms to comply

Over 1,000 firms have sought regulatory registration in Dubai following the implementation of Law 4 of 2022.

Dubai’s crypto regulator sets deadline for firms to comply
[Source photo: Anvita Gupta/Fast Company Middle East]

For the past few years, Dubai has been making rapid strides in its pursuit of becoming a global epicenter for cryptocurrencies, blockchain technologies, and virtual assets. The city has witnessed an influx of major players, including Binance, Coinbase, and WazirX.

In 2022, Dubai established the Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority (VARA), the world’s first independent regulator overseeing virtual assets. This move signaled the emirate’s commitment to fostering a transparent, secure, and compliant crypto ecosystem.

VARA, Dubai’s crypto watchdog, has now issued a final ultimatum to crypto firms operating in the emirate to register. Firms have until November 17 to obtain a license or register under VARA’s regulatory framework, or they will be forced to cease operations.

“VARA is calling on VASPs that have yet to submit the applications, have missed the notifications from their commercial licensing authorities, or have submitted incomplete forms to proactively get in touch to avoid unintended regulatory consequences,” the authority said.

This comes amid a surge in crypto activity in Dubai, with over 1,000 firms seeking registration under Law 4 of 2022. This law mandates that all virtual asset service providers (VASPs) operating in the emirate must obtain the necessary licensing or registration to ensure compliance and protect investors.

This decisive action underscores Dubai’s commitment to fostering a secure and regulated crypto environment. 

By bringing crypto firms under VARA’s oversight, Dubai aims to safeguard investors, prevent financial crimes, and promote responsible innovation in the crypto sector.

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