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How to Get A Forex License in UAE


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The United Arab Emirates (UAE) and most specifically, Dubai is one of the fastest growing financial centres in the world, partly due to its population which has a high-income level and an abundance of individuals searching for investment ideas. The favourable conditions in this region of the Middle East attracts many brokers to the Forex market, although there are still a number of brokers with an offshore Forex license in existence offering services that are not regulated. However, this does not mean that the UAE falls short on regulated Forex brokers – on the contrary, hence it is advisable to ensure you become fully regulated before you decide to go about obtaining a broker license in this region. You will learn:
  • How to set up a forex brokerage in UAE
  • The role of the Central Bank of UAE and SCA
  • Alternative licensing options
  • How much money you need to invest
  • How B2Broker can help


Setting Up in the UAE 

The Central Bank of the UAE, besides having responsibility for monetary policy and banking, is in charge of supervising Forex brokers and activities conducted. The Central Bank is also authorized to grant licenses to brokerage companies dealing in currency trading and commodities or intermediary companies. Obtaining a Forex trading license from the Central Bank is not an easy procedure, as there are multiple provisions in place to ensure that the brokers who do get licensed offer high-quality services and conduct their business in a fair and transparent way. The Central Bank works alongside the SCA (Securities and Commodities Authority) to make sure all the prerequisites are fulfilled prior to issuing a license. The most important amongst these requirements are that the Forex broker should be a UAE citizen. Secondly, at least 60% of the total paid-up capital in the company should be national shareholding. Finally, the minimum capital requirement ranges between one and three million Dirham, which is dependent on the nature of activities. These requirements ensure that regulated UAE Forex brokers are able to provide reputable services to their clients. The SCA also plays an important role in the process of licensing and monitoring and has a duty to ensure that registered Forex brokers in the UAE remain compliant with the law and keep their business practices fair and honest. The SCA seeks to protect traders and improve the financial markets generally by creating and tailoring legislation in accordance with the circumstances focusing on transparency, fairness and equity. Any broker intending to provide forex trading services will therefore, be regulated by the Central Bank of the UAE and licensed by the SCA.

Other Options

The UAE government also offers potential investors the option to set up a financial business in the region whilst retaining 100% ownership of their businesses. Both ADGM in Abu Dhabi and DIFC in Dubai are exclusive economic zones for financial companies, including brokers who may be considering a Dubai forex broker license. The only drawback for companies in this free zone is that they are not allowed to directly trade with the local market. UAE free zones have their own registration regimes, practices, and procedures.

Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM)

ADGM is located in the capital of the UAE and has 3 independent authorities. These are the Registration Authority (RA), the Financial Services Regulatory Authority (FSRA) and the ADGM Courts. The FSRA is the regulatory body for financial entities operating within the ADGM financial free zone.

Dubai International Financial Center (DIFC)

DIFC is a designated area in Dubai operating under an independent regulatory and legal system as a financial free zone. DIFC seeks to provide a secure and efficient platform to allow financial institutions and businesses to develop and expand within and beyond the region. The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) oversees all Forex brokers with a DFSA forex license. Strict DFSA regulatory procedures are enforced to ensure that all companies under its auspices, toe the line when it comes to Forex trading activities. To sum up, the UAE provides Forex brokers with various set up options offering advantages such as zero percent corporate tax, an extended double tax treaties network, world class infrastructure and a friendly business environment.

Expert Advice From the Industry Leaders

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