Blockchain adoption in the banking sector seems to be on the verge of getting a big boost in one of the world’s most financially stable countries. Although there is nothing official as of the moment of this writing, the United Arab Emirates Banks Federation’s Advisory Council is contemplating the application of the blockchain technology and its benefits to its member institutions, according to a publication from one of the biggest newspapers in the wealthy Middle East nation.

The UBF (as the UAE’s Banks Federation is shortened) is a nonprofit organization that encompasses the interests of 50banks in the nation. Their plan is to take advantage of the blockchain’s best features to optimize the KYC (know your customer) processes in each member bank.

Initiatives to Promote a Thriving Banking Ecosystem in the UAE

Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair, who currently acts as the leading face of the UBF’ Advisory Council, states that the organization intends to promote and keep a “thriving banking ecosystem” with the announced plans.

“As part of our efforts aimed at creating and sustaining a thriving banking ecosystem, we have undertaken a number ofinitiatives and new endeavors, such as the adoption of blockchain into KYCprocess,” he said.

The UBF and the member financial institutions have also discussed things such as the United Arab Emirates’ digital transformationprogram and Emiratization, which is a government employment project to allocateregular, normal people in critical roles in the public and private sectors.

Optimizing Cross-Border Payments, Customer Onboarding, and more

In fact, the UBF, through it Digital Committee and its leader Aref Al Ramli, has already explored the potential advantages of using the distributed ledger technology to digitize several processes in the member banks of the organization. The Digital Committee’s arm wants to apply blockchain technology to things like cross-border payments, customer onboarding, compliance reporting, and other transactions and situations. The idea is seen with good eyes in the country and in the banking sector.

The United Arab Emirates want to, according to Al Ghurair, keep up with modern times, that indicates an increase in the use of emerging technologies such as the blockchain to satisfy the ever-changing customer needs and expectations. The idea is to put the banking sector right at the front of innovations.

Taking Advantage of the Leading Emerging Technologies

These emerging technologies, Al Ghurairexplains, have the potential of helping banks and other financial institutions to build new revenue streams, “which will in turn drive sustained business growth.”

The country is advancing leaps and bounds towards global blockchain adoption, starting with banks as the primary promoters of the initiative. Just a few weeks ago, Al-Hilal Bank (based in the nation’s capital Abu Dhabi) reported to the world the completion of “the world’s first sukuk transaction. ”Sukuk referred to a legal tool known as“sharia compliant” bonds, which lets investors enjoy returns whilst complying with the Islamic law, an essential part of the UAE culture.

By Andres Chavez


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