Two of the biggest crypto exchanges in the world just opened up shop in the Middle East in their latest push for global expansion.
Binance, the biggest crypto exchange in the world just won the very first crypto provider service license in the Kingdom of Bahrain.
“Binance has been granted the first license for a global crypto-asset provider in The Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC) by the Central Bank of Bahrain,” Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ) said.
In a press release, CZ said:
“The license from Bahrain is a milestone in our journey to being fully licensed and regulated around the world… Team Bahrain has shown considerable foresight in its development of crypto regulations and provides the regulatory protections that consumers should come to expect from regulators around the world.
I’m proud of the hard work of the Binance team to meet the stringent criteria of the Central Bank of Bahrain, not just locally but globally by ensuring that we meet and exceed the requirements of regulators and protect users with strong anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing policies.”
Binance’s entrance into Bahrain was endorsed by Rasheed Al Maraj, Governor of the Central Bank of Bahrain, and Khalid Humaidan, CEO of the Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB).
“Developing regulations aligned with global trends is a key objective for us at the CBB. We continue to work with partners and industry leaders such as Binance to develop regulations that enable innovation and best practices,” Al Maraj said.
Several countries near Bahrain have banned cryptocurrency altogether, including Qatar, Egypt, and Iraq.
FTX Europe also became the first exchange to receive a crypto license in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
“FTX receiving this approval is a continuation of our mission to be at the forefront of licensing and regulation around the world.,” FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried said in a press release.
“We plan to continue playing a lead role in advancing the digital asset industry in countries that provide a robust regulatory framework, while also operating with the highest security, risk, and investor protection standards.”
FTX Europe, a newly established arm of the company, will be setting up in UAE shortly after Dubai announced last week it was launching a new Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority (VARA) unit to oversee and stimulate the digital asset industry, among other things.