With the new license, Sam Bankman-FTX Fried’s crypto exchange will be able to provide crypto derivatives to institutional investors in Dubai.
FTX, a major worldwide cryptocurrency exchange, has received a virtual asset license in Dubai, allowing it to expand its activities in the United Arab Emirates.
The license appears to be given under a new cryptocurrency regulation passed last week in Dubai, with the Dubai Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority (VARA) being the Emirate’s primary crypto regulator in special development and free zones.
FTX has secured the “first and so far only” digital exchange license from Dubai, according to FTX founder and CEO Sam Bankman-Fried.
Binance has also secured a crypto license in Dubai through the same mechanism. Last week, the world’s largest crypto exchange by trading volume was said to be working on obtaining an operational license in Dubai.
FTX wants to open a regional office in Dubai and provide institutional investors with crypto derivatives products with centralized counterparty clearing as part of its drive in the city, according to Bankman-Fried.
The Dubai World Trade Centre, which became a complete zone and regulator of cryptocurrencies, products, and operators in December 2021, includes FTX Europe, the company’s European and Middle Eastern section. Binance was one of the first crypto exchanges to join a new crypto hub formed by the Dubai World Trade Centre Authority last year.
“Dubai’s assurance of its adherence to these promises allows FTX to safely pursue its overall plan of scaling toward becoming the first virtual-asset service provider to join global markets in a fully regulated way,” said FTX Europe head Patrick Gruhn.
The United Arab Emirates has emerged as one of the most crypto-friendly countries, with authorities in Dubai, the country’s capital, stepping up efforts to support the industry’s growth. Last year, UAE regulators came up with a number of arrangements to allow crypto trading in several free economic zones in Dubai.
The Bahamas-based FTX is a cryptocurrency exchange. FTX was created in Antigua and Barbuda and is based in the Bahamas. The exchange had over one million members and a daily trading volume of $10 billion as of July 2021. FTX also operates FTX.US, a secondary exchange for US citizens.