The cryptocurrency exchange Binance announced on Wednesday that it has been granted a license to operate in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates. The company’s presence in the Middle East has recently been increasing as it acquired a license as a crypto service provider in another Gulf market, Bahrain, earlier this week.
Under the Dubai Virtual Asset Provider (VASP) license, Binance will be allowed to open an office in the emirate and offer digital asset exchange services to pre-qualified investors and financial firms in accordance with the recently approved regulations.
Dubai is one of the seven emirates that make up the federation of the United Arab Emirates. It has 22 VASPs with a new Virtual Asset Exchange license (VAX) offered in the emirate’s special economic zone. The first crypto company to be given this opportunity was FTX, which announced its development earlier this week. Binance almost immediately followed the lead of the competitor.
This move is part of Binance’s bullish strategy in the Middle East. On March 15, the cryptocurrency exchange announced that it had been licensed to operate in another country in the Persian Gulf, Bahrain. This will enable the world’s largest stock exchange in volume to offer trading, custody and portfolio management to Bahraini clients.
Bahrain and the UAE (and Dubai in particular) are adopting an innovation-driven approach and are fighting to be the most supportive jurisdiction for cryptocurrency in the region. In January 2022, the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) piloted JP Morgan’s crypto payment system.
The introduction of new cryptocurrency legislation in the UAE in March 2022 was an important step in the union’s ongoing efforts to “help the sector develop and protect investors,” said Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.