Bahrain under crypto spotlight
Bahrain has come under the global spotlight as the Kingdom’s latest progressive crypto-regulations have impressed the tech community. The latest initiatives taken by the Central Bank of Bahrain has garnered global praise and was cited as a step forward for the development of crypto-currencies usage by global experts and media. The move was well received with some international analysts going as far to say that Bahrain could become a leader in the field. The Central Bank of Bahrain (“CBB”) on Thursday issued for consultation, the draft rules on Crypto-asset Platform Operators (“CPO”) which provides a regulatory framework for the licensing and supervision of crypto-asset services including those provided by a platform operator as a principal, agent and as a custodian, within or from Bahrain.
“Realising the growing demand for this type of market globally and regionally, the CBB is introducing a comprehensive framework, which is riskbased to regulate this area of financial services. “The new regulatory framework covers the requirements for licensing, financial resources, and measures to safeguard client or customer interests, technology standards and in particular the cyber security risk management measures, reporting and other requirements,” the CBB stated. “Bahrain is all set to establish itself as a regional leader in Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Technology,” The Currency Analytics stated. “Bahrain is evolving to be the best in the International Fintech Hub.
Bahrain has already identified the Fintech sector as being crucial in contributing to the development of the Kingdom as the regional business and banking hub,” it stated. The news of CBB move was prominently covered by crypto news outlets such as Coin Telegraph, Bitcoin.com, coingape. They noted that Bahrain is one of the first countries to take initiatives for crypto regulation. “Regulations have been a critical hurdle that limited growth and adoption of cryptocurrency across the globe. But as cryptocurrencies are getting popular and the positives of it becoming more visible, regulators are trying their best to regulate it than eliminate it.
The recent addition to this list is Bahrain, where the Central Bank has issued draft rules to regulate cryptocurrencies,” Coingape said. Khalid Hamad, Executive Director of Banking Supervision, commented on the move saying: “This regulatory framework will address the demand from the market for these services and the need to also recognise this innovation in financial services. The CBB’s experience with the participants within the Regulatory Sandbox was insightful in shaping these rules.” Bahrain’s first ever crypto-currency exchange will soon be launched in the Kingdom.
Rain will be one of the first in the region. The exchange has already opened its waiting list on its website after spending a year in Central Bank of Bahrain’s regulatory sandbox. The exchange will facilitate the purchase, sale and storage of crypto-currencies. Rain, founded in 2016 by four entrepreneurs – Yehia Badawy, Abdullah Almoaiqel, AJ Nelson and Joseph Dallaga, is backed by big names in the industry including Bitcoin core developer Jimmy Song and Cumberland Mining founder Mike Komaransky. Bahrain could become a leader in the crypto-currency space with the expected launch of crypto-currency exchanges in the country, according to Executive Director of Financial Services at Economic Development Board, David Parker.
“Bahrain has the potential to be a leader in terms of crypto-currency exchanges. There are a number of crypto-exchanges currently testing at the Central Bank of Bahrain Sandbox. “If we can get this right, we can emerge as not only as a regional leader but also an international leader. I think there are so many ways in which Bahrain in terms of its financial industry and its wider economy be embracing Blockchain Technology for the good of the economy.”