Dubai is set to play host to a conference on digital currencies later this month, an event that comes several months after a government-backed blockchain effort was first unveiled.
Hosted at the Burj Al Arab hotel, the one-day Keynote Conference event on 30th May will feature speakers from both the global bitcoin and blockchain ecosystems. The event is being sponsored by an innovation center originally founded by the ruler of Dubai as part of a broader effort to modernize the region.
Among those set to appear from the region include Dr. Aisha Bin Bishr, director general of Smart Dubai, a public effort to support the digitization of services in the city-state, and Saif Al Aleel, who leads the Dubai Future Foundation that is both sponsoring the event and broader research efforts in Dubai on the technology.
Al Aleel said in a statement:
“We realize the importance of the financial sector in the UAE’s development, and we believe that blockchain technology can usher in vital changes by introducing new approaches and projects in the sector.”
In February, the Global Blockchain Council was launched, backed by an innovation effort founded by the vice-president of the United Arab Emirate and emir of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid.
The 32-member group includes representatives from a number of local government initiatives, as well as technology companies like Cisco, IBM and Microsoft.
Blockchain startups like BitOasis, Kraken and YellowPay are taking part in the initiative, which is aimed at testing and developing technology solutions using blockchain that fit into the broader goal of increasing digitization of services in Dubai.
This effort is largely in the formative phase, according to those involved, and comes as finance stakeholders in the region begin to explore the technology more closely.
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