In a recent announcement by Dubai’s virtual asset regulatory authority ( VARA), the Department of Economy and Tourism is now offering regulated virtual assets activities in its branches.

This means that Virtual Asset Service Providers (VASPs) seeking to conduct business in Dubai’s mainland or make changes to their current commercial licenses may submit their applications for the below-mentioned activities at DET branches.

The list of Regulated Virtual Assets Activities (require a license from VARA) include, VA Advisory Services,  VA Broker-Dealer Services,  VA Custody Services,  VA Exchange Services, VA Lending and Borrowing Services and  VA Management and Investment Services. In addition to VA propriety trading which requires a NOC from VARA. 

Firms carrying on VA activities in Dubai [except DIFC] prior to 7 February 2023 [Legacy VASPs], must have their applications seeking regulatory oversight or relevant guidance from VARA by the final deadline of 30 April 2023.

As per the announcement, firms that have failed to comply with the regulatory framework by the aforementioned deadline must comply immediately to avoid substantial punitive measures including material fines/penalties and potential firm closure.

DET Centres offering commercial licences for the Regulated Virtual Assets Activities are available in – Al Barsha Mall, DED Café, Palm Strip Mall Jumeriah,  Al Twar Centre , Dubai Mall and  Clock Tower Deira