The Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), a premier financial hub in the Middle East, has expanded its virtual assets framework to include XRP. This move positions the DIFC as a forward-thinking entity in the global financial landscape, particularly in the blockchain and crypto space.
According to a press release issued by Ripple earlier today, the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA), the autonomous regulatory body responsible for overseeing financial services conducted in or from the DIFC, has granted approval for XRP, making it the latest addition to a select group of digital assets permitted within the jurisdiction. This approval allows licensed virtual asset firms within the DIFC to utilize XRP for various services, potentially enhancing the speed and efficiency of international value transfers.
XRP’s approval by the DFSA is a milestone, as it is the first digital asset to gain such recognition since the authority began accepting external applications. It now joins the ranks of previously approved assets like Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), and Litecoin (LTC) under the DFSA’s virtual assets regime.
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has been rapidly establishing itself as an innovative jurisdiction that provides clear regulatory guidance for virtual asset services. The DFSA’s comprehensive framework is part of a broader commitment by Dubai to cultivate a robust crypto, payments, and fintech ecosystem. This commitment is further supported by the establishment of the Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA) in the previous year, which aims to safeguard investors, ensure high levels of risk assurance, and foster innovation.
Brad Garlinghouse, CEO of Ripple, commented on the development, highlighting Dubai’s leadership in virtual asset regulation and its efforts to attract foreign investment and stimulate economic growth. Ripple, which has been a significant contributor to the development of the XRP Ledger, established its MENA headquarters in the DIFC in 2020, drawn by Dubai’s innovative regulatory environment and its status as a global financial center. Notably, the MENA region accounts for approximately 20% of Ripple’s customer base.
This announcement precedes Ripple Swell, Ripple’s annual conference that convenes leading figures from the financial industry and regulatory sectors. Scheduled to take place in Dubai on 8-9 November, the event will feature prominent speakers, including the DIFC’s Chief Operating Officer Alya Al Zarouni and VARA’s CEO Hensen Orser, among other national and global experts.
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