VARA becomes the world’s first regulator in the Metaverse

The Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority of Dubai (VARA) has announced its entry into the Metaverse with the establishment of the Metaverse headquarters in the dynamic virtual world of ‘The Sandbox’.

VARA, set up to provide a robust and progressive operating structure that allows the virtual asset (VA) sector to scale, while protecting the market and investors, anticipates regulating the principles of service and operations management, rather than the ever evolving products and underlying technology. This bold move reflects the Dubai government’s confidence that virtual assets are an integral part of the future digital economy, and its willingness to establish the emirate as the virtual asset capital of the world.

Opening the VARA MetaHQ on the Sandbox, His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council, said: “Dubai remains at the forefront of technological transformation. We have surpassed our role as an early adopter and become an innovator and participant in shaping the future of this technology. Today, VARA joins the Metaverse to become the first government body of Dubai and the Metaverse, ushering in a new era in which the Dubai government uses modern innovation to extend its services and regulatory powers to the public in an open technology space, without limits or boundaries. VARA represents a serious effort to create a new, powerful economic sector that contributes to the country’s economy and creates new investment opportunities, and this is possible thanks to the secure and modern regulatory solutions we envisage. Our presence in the Metaverse therefore marks the beginning of a new phase in the Dubai government’s march into the future; a phase that will have a positive impact in the long term.”

Sheikh Hamdan added: “By extending VARA’s resources to a borderless audience through Metaverse, Dubai is creating a prototype model for a decentralised regulator, inviting international thought leaders – global authorities, governance custodians and industry shapers – to participate, share knowledge and collectively solve problems so we can enable a vibrant virtual asset sector to create economic sustainability, accelerate social inclusion and address environmental sustainability.”

In its determination to ensure economic freedom in the Metaworld, VARA joins the private sector gamemakers, innovators and market makers in ICT, financial and professional services, lifestyle, entertainment and consumer goods beyond the world of games and VASPs. VARA MetaHQ will serve as the main channel to engage VASPs worldwide to initiate applications, enable young licensees to enter the metaverse, openly share knowledge and experience with consumers and fellow regulators to raise awareness, ensure secure adoption and global compatibility.

Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General, Dubai World Trade Centre Authority commented, “Dubai sees the virtual asset industry as driving the global economy of the future. VARA was created at a crucial time in response to the expansion of the emirate’s incredibly complex and sophisticated legal framework governing the virtual asset industry. As the first niche regulator for the virtual asset sector globally, VARA’s headquarters in the Metaverse also makes the UAE the first jurisdiction to enter this platform, reflecting our leadership’s commitment to helping create a borderless new market that ensures sustainable economic freedom.

VARA’s acquisition of land in the Sandbox symbolises our belief in this sector and we, as a government, have a responsibility to be the bridge that enables investors and consumers to safely deploy and jointly scale the economy. Beyond the direct economic benefits and acceleration of Dubai’s GDP, VARA sees this as a first step in jointly educating and developing the expertise of global regulators so that the international community can benefit from a virtual economy that has been allowed to scale safely and sustainably.”

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