Complex Made Simple

FinTech alert: new regulatory regime in Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi has made a big leap forward to chase its dream of developing the city as the FinTech hub in the MENA region. The UAE capital’s financial free zone Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) on Wednesday launched Regulatory Laboratory (RegLab) with the implementation of its FinTech legislative framework.

ADGM said RegLab is designed to foster innovation within the UAE financial services market for both new market entrants and existing financial institutions.

“By taking into account the unique business model and risks of the Fintech participant and customising the test boundaries and regulatory requirements accordingly, the RegLab allows the participant to develop and test its FinTech proposition in a safe environment while not putting undue regulatory burden on the participant,” it said in a statement.

With the new regulatory regime in place, startup investors can develop and test their FinTech proposition for a period of up to two years.

Authorities said local and international FinTech firms and businesses can send their applications to participate in the ADGM RegLab with effect from November 2. Applications for the first RegLab cohort will close on 31 January 2017, ADGM said.

“We are very excited to launch the ADGM RegLab and it is encouraging that interests have been pouring in since we announced our plans. ADGM’s commitment to and pursuit of innovation have always been part of its DNA and culture as an International Financial Centre serving the business and financial aspirations of Abu Dhabi and the MENA region,” said Richard Teng, Chief Executive Officer, FSRA of ADGM.