Polishing its steely determination to place itself on the global fintech map, the UAE’s central bank has inaugurated a dedicated fintech department tasked with spearheading the development of its fintech ecosystem.
The Central Bank of the UAE (CBUAE)’s CBUAE FinTech Office will be the conduit between the industry and regulatory authorities, with a mandate to support the ecosystem to attract international and regional fintech companies as well as providing an avenue for collaboration between industry stakeholders.
“The UAE is no longer on the fringes of the global fintech revolution but moving toward the center of it. At the CBUAE, we have played a proactive role to build a mature fintech ecosystem in the country,” commented Central Bank Governor Abdulhamid M Saeed Alahmadi, who added: “This office will allow us to accelerate the transformation of digital payments and support financial inclusion. In addition, the CBUAE FinTech Office is mandated to execute the UAE’s FinTech Strategy which is centered on innovation and collaboration.”
The CBUAE FinTech Office’s strategy is based on two pillars: effective and balanced regulations; and robust digital infrastructures, which form the foundation for five core building blocks to allow continued development and innovation in the UAE comprising: research and application; regulatory interface; coordination and liaison between relative stakeholders; talent development in the UAE; and cross-border collaboration.
The establishment of the office bodes well for the UAE’s Islamic fintech agenda. One of the world’s largest Islamic finance markets, the UAE also houses one of the largest pool of Shariah fintech service providers at 17, as identified by IFN Islamic Fintech Landscape at the end of November 2020.