The Central Bank Of Bahrain has published its final set of rules that regulate trading with regard to cryptocurrencies after publishing a draft proposal in December. The new rules cover requirements for financial reporting, licensing, governance, cyber security standards, anti-money laundering, counter-terrorism financing, avoidance of conflicts of interest, and minimum capital required by cryptocurrency firms.
The new rules will govern all crypto transactions that take place in Bahrain. The central bank’s regulations are “aimed at ensuring that related activities are brought within the regulatory perimeter and are subject to comprehensive regulatory and supervisory measures”.
According to TradeArabia, the regulations also contain rules relevant to “order matching, pre and post-trade transparency, measures to avoid market manipulation and market abuse, and conflicts of interest”.
“The CBB’s introduction of rules relating to crypto assets is in line with its goal to develop a comprehensive framework for the FinTech ecosystem supporting Bahrain’s position as a leading financial hub in the Middle East and North Africa region,” said Khalid Hamad, the central bank’s Executive Director of Banking Supervision.
Bahrain Is The Leading Financial Hub In The Middle East
The tiny kingdom is a crypto pioneer in the Middle East. FinTech Bay, inaugurated in Bahrain last February, is the leading FinTech Hub in the Middle East and Africa. It houses more than 30 companies who are working on blockchain technology, developing cryptocurrencies, digital payments and other financial technologies.
“We will continue to enhance our regulatory framework in order to keep pace with the innovations taking place in the major financial centres around the globe,” said Mr Hamad.
Bahrain’s move is a “great step in the right direction for the crypto-asset ecosystem in the region,” said Ola Doudin, Chief Executive Officer of BitOasis, a cryptocurrency exchange with offices in Bahrain, Oman, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab emirates.
Neighbouring Arabian Gulf states including Abu Dhabi and Dubai are also investing in the growth of FinTech start-ups.
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