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UAE to introduce ICO regulations in 2019

UAE’s financial regulator Securities and Commodities Authority (SCA) will introduce Initial Coin Offering (ICO) regulations in 2019, allowing companies to raise capital through crowdfunding using blockchain technology, reported local publication The National on Friday.

According to the report, SCA has already approved ICOs as securities and will be partnering with the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange and Dubai Financial Market to develop platforms for token trading next year.

“We have signed agreements with law firms to come up with the sandbox and rule books for the issuance of ICOs. Legal requirements will be finished by the end of the first half of 2019,” said SCA’s CEO Obaid Al Zaabi. “Then there will be adoption of technology and development of infrastructure on the side of the exchanges.”

The regulator will facilitate stock markets in Dubai and Abu Dhabi with adoption of latest blockchain technology for issuance of ICOs.

“An implementation plan will be on the ground after agreements with ADX and DFM are finalised. Our market is open. [ICO] registration and licensing is available for all kinds of companies, from across the world,” said SCA CEO.

“Our market is open. [ICO] registration and licensing is available for all kinds of companies, from across the world,” he added.

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have lost most of their value in last one year. From its peak of $20,000 exactly one year ago, Bitcoin now a days is trading at $4,000. But SCA’s CEO is not worried about the volatility of cryptos.

“Bitcoin, Ethereum and others are not our business. We are more concerned about crypto issuance and how to bring them for trade on our exchanges. There is a demand – we have already received couple of requests for the issuance of the crypto assets and tokens,” he noted.

The chief executive also explained that SCA consider security as main priority.

“We are going to authorise a very selected secured asset class in a way of issuing the ICOs. We are a regulator, we put money in regulations and we have sufficient budget in a way of delivering our responsibility,” he said.

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