Dubai is leaving no stone unturned in its quest to be the global leader in Web3 and artificial intelligence (AI) following the announcement of a new path for licensing.
Dubai’s AI and Web 3.0 Campus confirmed that it would give licenses to global firms seeking to set up operations in the city. A vital feature of the tech hub’s licenses is the provision of a 90% subsidy designed to lure established industry service providers to the region.
The Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) will operate the new licensing regime, offering regulatory and compliance support to firms dabbling in blockchain and AI.
“The campus will foster a world-class nurturing environment that enables business growth and development,” said DIFC Chief Executive Officer Mohammed Alblooshi. “We are confident that by granting these licenses, we will attract more global talent and investment to the region and create a culture of collaboration and innovation.”
Apart from a 90% subsidy on licensing fees, firms will have the opportunity to fully utilize Dubai’s AI and Web 3.0 Campus research and development facilities. Launched in early 2023, the Campus offers state-of-the-art digital infrastructure while offering firms collaborative workspaces and accelerator programs.
Dubai’s decision to place a premium on AI development follows heavy investments in the local Web3 economy. The city’s robust digital currency framework, proactive regulator, and free-trade zones have led to an influx of the largest global exchanges seeking registration in the city.
Months after its launch, the city’s Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA) established guidelines for digital currency advertising, launched complete regulations for service providers, and rolled out a schedule of fees for all industry-related activities.
Bybit moved its headquarters to the DIFC after obtaining operational licenses, while Binance, SmartLedger, and Standard Chartered (NASDAQ: SCBFF) have all launched operations in Dubai. Despite its open arms, the regulator maintains that it adheres to high regulatory standards, famously suspending BitOasis’ license over failure to comply with existing rules.
AI is the new frontier
Dubai has begun leaning toward AI, eyeing the establishment of a hub with leading industry developers. McKinsey disclosed in a recent report that AI can potentially create up to 200,000 jobs in the Middle East by 2025, contributing billions of dollars to the GDP.
The United Arab Emirates reportedly spent millions of dollars on Nvidia’s (NASDAQ: NVDA) latest AI chip in a heated race with Saudi Arabia. According to insiders who know the matter, the UAE is keen on developing its generative AI systems independent of Western influences.
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