Crypto Boom In The Gulf: Dubai, Abu Dhabi Fast Becoming Hotbed Of Digital Currency

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In response to the global cryptocurrency boom, the United Arab Emirates has become a hub for the industry as a result of its crypto-friendly legislation, which have made it a favorite destination for digital currency aficionados.

Dubai and Abu Dhabi are vying for cryptocurrency supremacy. Large exchanges, like FTX, which was last valued at $32 billion, are making their presence known in Dubai.

In the shadow of the sail-shaped Burj Al Arab hotel in the buzzing city, bitcoin tycoons mingle with Emirati royals, Wall Street bankers, and social media personalities.

The UAE is not lacking in dependable labor force. While crypto companies from many areas of the world have already established operations in the Gulf state, traditional lenders’ interest in the sector is expanding rapidly.

Companies from different parts of the globe have already set up shop in the Gulf state. (Image credit: Nomadic Matt)

Growing Crypto Interest In The Gulf

In an interview with Bloomberg, Richard Teng, the CEO of Binance MENA, said, “We have a lot of interest from workers of traditional financial institutions who want to work for us.” He added that “a lot of them” are already being recruited.

Amir Tabch, the former head of global markets at Emirates Investment bank, believes that the regular financial industry and the crypto sector are not too dissimilar. He stated that he intends to hire additional bankers to “bridge the gap” between the two industries.

In the past few months, Dubai and Abu Dhabi have issued more than 30 digital currency exchange licenses and enacted new regulations.

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Crypto total market cap at $1.64 trillion on the weekend chart | Source:

Mass Hiring In The UAE

Cryptocurrency exchanges have reacted. Binance is recruiting more than one hundred individuals in the Gulf region, and its CEO, Changpeng Zhao, has relocated from Singapore to Dubai and purchased a property there. Kraken is also headed to the Gulf.

Meanwhile, Binance appointed former Bank of New York Mellon Corp. banker Vishal Sacheendran as its director of MENA in the UAE.

Robbie Nakarmi, the firm’s senior counsel in Dubai, arrived late last year after nearly ten years as a legal counsel for mergers and acquisitions.

They are seldom alone. In 2017, Ahmed Ismail, a former Dubai banker with Bank of America and Jefferies, followed suit. He co-founded HAYVN, a digital currency investment bank based in Abu Dhabi, with Chris Flinos, a fellow BofA alumnus.

UAE, 3rd Biggest Crypto Market In The Mid-East

According to the Global Citizens Report, the UAE’s total private wealth increased by $47 billion between 2019 and 2021 as around 5,600 billionaires migrated into the country.

In its report, Chainalysis said from July 2020 to June 2021, the UAE is the third-largest crypto market in the Middle East, behind Turkey and Lebanon, with a transaction volume of approximately $26 billion.

While the region’s crypto footprint is relatively small on a global scale, it increased around 1,500% from the previous year, according to the data.

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Featured image CoinCu News, chart from

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