In an interview with Bloomberg News, Trust Wallet, self-custody crypto wallet, majority owned by the former CEO of Binance has announced its operations in the UAE both in RAKDAO (Digital assets Oasis) free zone in Ras Al Khaimah and in ADGM in Abu Dhabi.

According to Eowyn Chen, CEO of TrustWallet, “Trust Wallet operates from the free trade zone of Ras Al Khaimah, where it has a business license. The zone is also known as RAK DAO, for “Digital Asset Oasis,” and caters primarily to blockchain companies. RAK has “more flexible and better corporate treatment” for web3 companies.”

Chen moved to Dubai from Virginia in October, while the company will be based in Ras Al Khaimah, the sixth-largest city in the UAE. The company has about 80 employees worldwide with about 15 per cent to 20 per cent in the UAE according to Chen.

A separate company, DApps Platform, holds the intellectual property rights for the wallet service and is based in Abu Dhabi Global Market in Abu Dhabi.

According to Chen, Trust Wallet has seen growth in India, Pakistan, and business opportunities in the UAE.

Trust Wallet is a software-based crypto wallet service designed to let users self-custody the kinds of digital assets popular in decentralized finance applications.

Globally, the app-based service has 56 million downloads on iOS and Android, making it the most popular crypto wallet for handheld devices, according to Data.ai.

In her interview Chen described regulators in the UAE as having a “friendlier outlook toward crypto in general”. That gives Trust Wallet confidence about the likelihood of “reasonable regulation on decentralized finance.”

ADGM in Abu Dhabi announced recently that it will be amending its virtual asset regulations and introducing DeFi regulations in 2024.

In a recent tweet, Japan based Astar, EVM based smart contract Blockchain platform that seeks to be the future of multichain smart contracts revealed its plans to set up a base in the UAE. Astar is designed to become a hub for smart contracts on Polkadot and is backed by prominent investors that include Binance, Huobi, OKEx, Fenbushi, and others.

Sota Watanabe, Founder of Astar, stated in  recent tweet, “ My Abu Dhabi and Dubai business trip  was amazing. Met some government officials, investors and entrepreneurs here in UAE We plan to set up a local office here too. Our future is bright!”

In November 2022, Astar Blockchain Network onboarded Japan’s top mobile carrier NTT Docomo to collaborate on mass adoption of Web3 as well as its social implementation.

Then in late July 2023, Fireblocks, an enterprise-grade platform for institutional adoption of digital assets, integrated with Astar Network, an EVM and WebAssembly (Wasm) compatible smart contracts platform.  The collaboration could see more than 650 banks and institutional investors use Fireblocks’ technology to access and manage their digital assets, boosting institutional adoption of DeFi on Astar, the two platforms noted in their press release.