CBUAE Plans to Launch Central Bank Digital Currency

As part of the first phase of its recently initiated financial infrastructure transformation (FIT) initiative, the Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates (CBUAE) has plans to introduce a central bank digital currency (CBDC) that will be valid for both international and local transactions.

The Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates (CBUAE) has recently made a statement in which it announced the FIT program and underlined its goal to assist the country’s financial services industry. The UAE’s Central Bank underlined the fact that the scheme will boost digital transactions and help the UAE to become more competitive as a financial and digital payment centre.

The issue of a CBDC is required in order to go on to the next level of the FIT program. The issuing of a CBDC would, in the words of the central bank, “address the difficulties and inefficiencies of cross-border payments and assist spur innovation for domestic payments, respectively.” The Governor of the CBUAE, Khaled Mohamed Balama, said that the FIT program would “help a flourishing UAE financial ecosystem and its future expansion.”

During the first stage of the program, in addition to a CBDC, the government intends to launch a unified card payment platform to “facilitate the growth of e-commerce” as well as an instant payments platform to “support financial inclusion and enable a cashless society.” Both of these platforms are intended to be implemented in order to “facilitate the growth of e-commerce.”

Included in the nine initiatives that make up the FIT program are the ones that will be put into action during the first stage. Following the first stage, other initiatives will be implemented, such as an e-Know Your Customer portal and an innovation centre.

The long-awaited “Full Market Product Regulations” were finally published on February 7 by the Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority (VARA) of Dubai. These regulations offer detailed instructions on virtual asset operations for projects that are operating inside the emirate. The restrictions include a prohibition on the issuance of “anonymity-enhanced cryptocurrencies,” which are also sometimes referred to as “privacy coins,” as well as actions that are similar.