- This marked the first approval of a virtual asset under the DFSA’s regime.
- Dubai’s inclusion of XRP opens up new possibilities for regional payments on the XRP Ledger.
Dubai has granted approval to the digital asset XRP for utilization within the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC). The move, authorized by the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA), enables licensed virtual asset firms in DIFC to incorporate XRP into their range of virtual asset services.
This decision marked the first approval of a virtual asset under the DFSA’s regime since it began accepting external applications. XRP now joins the ranks of previously approved assets, including Bitcoin [BTC], Ethereum [ETH], and Litecoin [LTC].
Ripple’s rising fortunes amid SEC’s legal battle
Brad Garlinghouse, Ripple’s CEO, commended Dubai’s forward-looking regulatory approach and expressed his excitement over the DFSA’s encouragement of digital asset adoption.
Garlinghouse stated that this step positions Dubai as a prominent financial hub dedicated to attracting foreign investments and promoting economic growth.
Furthermore, Dubai’s inclusion of XRP opens up new possibilities for regional payments and various applications on the XRP Ledger.
Ripple, a key contributor and user of the XRP Ledger, chose the DIFC as the location for its Middle East and North Africa (MENA) headquarters in 2020, citing Dubai’s regulatory framework, extensive network, and status as a global financial powerhouse.
Notably, approximately 20% of Ripple’s clientele is based in the MENA region.
This announcement coincides with Ripple Swell, the company’s flagship event, scheduled to be hosted in Dubai from 8-9 November.
Previous iterations of Ripple Swell brought together influential voices from the financial industry and regulatory sphere in major global financial centers like London and Singapore. This edition will feature DIFC’s Chief Operating Officer Alya Al Zarouni and VARA’s CEO Hensen Orser.
Briefing schedule set for Ripple vs SEC
Meanwhile, Ripple is not enjoying the same acceptance with US regulators.
The SEC dropped its case against Ripple’s top executives, CEO Brad Garlinghouse and co-founder Chris Larsen in October. This marked the SEC’s third significant loss in its lawsuit against Ripple.
The lawsuit’s dismissal is pending court approval. The incident led to crypto exchanges including Binance.US, Coinbase, Kraken, Bitstamp re-listing XRP for trading. Many crypto analysts see this as a resurgence for the XRP token and Ripple in general.
Things took a fresh turn when the SEC demanded a $770 million settlement from Ripple. Attorney John Deaton suggests that the SEC aims to make an example of Ripple, seeking “$770M worth of flesh.” He anticipates a prolonged legal process but highlights the pivotal date of 17 January, 2024, coinciding with the Coinbase motion’s oral argument.
Judge Analisa Torres has set a briefing schedule deadline for both parties. This requires them to jointly propose a schedule regarding remedies or request the court’s intervention if they can’t agree. With the executives’ case resolved, the focus now shifts to Ripple’s role in institutional XRP sales.