• 28 May, 2024

Dubai Enhances Crypto Scrutiny of Binance via Licensing

The cryptocurrency destination of Binance founder Changpeng “CZ” Zhao, Dubai, is strengthening crypto scrutiny via licensing requirements. Operating on a ‘Preparatory MVP’ crypto license in Dubai, Binance is being asked to furnish more details by the regulator, Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA). 

More information is being sought by VARA officials from Binance pertaining to its “ownership structure, governance and auditing procedures.” Information on the same lines is also being requested by VARA from other international entities applying for permits in Dubai.

Sam Blatteis, CEO, The MENA Catalysts, said, “VARA wants to turn Dubai into a capital for the digital-assets economy while safeguarding its business ties with Western jurisdictions like Europe that are adopting more muscular crypto regulations,”

The MENA Catalysts offers consulting on government-relations to fintech multinationals wanting to expand in the Persian Gulf. 

In an email, Binance stated, “We have disclosed all necessary answers to VARA on a proactive basis and in line with our regulatory and fiduciary responsibilities.” Binance maintains that enough information is given on the ownership structure and external auditor of its entity based in Dubai.

Since Binance has a global advisory board and not global headquarters, VARA is also seeking more details on ownership, board procedures, and auditing. On a broader scale, the UAE is making efforts to remove itself from the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) “gray list” of jurisdictions.

Binance has plans to float crypto trading services in Dubai via its local entity, Binance FZE. Binance’s Dubai-based entity is said to be Mazars-audited, having a board of directors. 

Binance intends to avail an Operational MVP license, permitting it to serve the institutions and qualified investors. Once that happens, the Full Market Product (FMP) permit would be subscribed by June end, VARA states. The FMP would permit entities to offer retail investors with cryptocurrency trading services.

FMPs will be issued from the end of June, according to VARA, and recipients will be allowed to offer crypto trading to all retail investors.

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