Dubai’s digital asset regulator, the Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA), has established its Metaverse headquarters in the virtual world of The Sandbox. VARA makes its way into the Metaverse and wants to “make itself accessible to its industry in its environment”. As well as further “facilitating collaboration between virtual asset service providers, industry influencers and global regulators.”
Why Dubai? A Metaverse headquarters
In a comment following the announcement, Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Crown Prince of Dubai, expressed his zeal for “modern innovation”. This allows the wider reach of its services “without restrictions or limits”. Additionally, the Dubai regulator said the establishment of its “MetaHQ” office could help reach “younger licensees” entering the virtual world.
In addition, Sheikh Hamdan added that VARA has created a decentralized regulatory model that allows stakeholders to communicate and resolve issues by installing the Metaverse HQ.
VARA breaks ground
VARA wasn’t the only company to announce plans to open offices in the Metaverse this year. However, VARA is one of the first regulators to do so. On Tuesday, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission said it would add 20 people to its crypto enforcement department to “be better equipped to monitor wrongdoing in the crypto markets,” but has not signaled a similar move into the metaverse.
Additionally, Director General Helal Saeed Almarri commented on Dubai’s views on virtual assets as “the engine of the future global economy”. Almarri also commented on VARA as the “first niche regulator for the VA sector worldwide”. In his remarks, Almarri believes their move “could enable a borderless new market that will enable sustainable economic freedom.” around Dubai.
Despite VARA’s Metaverse campaign, Dubai remains on the index of nations with the strictest cryptocurrency policies. As a result, no crypto service provider can operate in the country without the approval of the VARA. Failure to do so may even result in suspension or withdrawal of permission. As VARA advances into the metaverse, physical regulations could prevent work in the digital realm.