Cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology were hot topics of discussion during the 7th World Government Summit, held in the United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) city of Dubai over February 10 to 12.
Developments in cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology were discussed during two closed sessions hosted by the UAE’s Ministry of Finance (MoF) during the summit.
According to local news sources, the panel discussion focused on building a feasible environment for the deployment and adoption of blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies.
“The Summit is the starting point for the development of ideas, visions, and initiatives that enhance human life and enhance the role and work of governments in promoting the quality of their societies,” said MoF Undersecretary Younis Haji Al-Khoori.
UAE financial regulators, in a joint project with Saudi Arabia, recently took a major step in the implementation of cryptocurrencies for use in cross-border transactions.
The two countries launched the joint cryptocurrency Aber to be used for financial settlements between their respective central banks. If the trial is successful, it could open the way for more widespread use of distributed ledger technology (DLT) in the region.
The trial of Aber has reinforced the positive stance that the UAE has taken towards crypto industry regulation. Late last year, the UAE Securities and Commodities Authority (SCA) announced its plans to introduce ICO regulations by mid-2019.
The SCA will reportedly work with the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange and Dubai Financial Market to develop a platform for ICO token trading.
An nouncing its ICO regulation plans last year, SCA chief executive Obad Al Zaabi, said that the regulator had “signed agreements with law firms to come up with the sandbox and rulebooks for the issuance of ICOs,” and added that “legal requirements will be finished by the end of the first half of 2019.”