Central Bank of Bahrain Issues New Cryptocurrency Regulations

Central Bank of Bahrain Issues New Cryptocurrency Regulations


Bahrain’s central bank (CBB) has issued new crypto-related regulations, TradeArabia reports today. The document relates to all crypto-related elements, such as licensing, governance, capital, control environment,  and risk management.

In December 2018, Reuters reported that CBB issued a draft of rules to regulate operators working in the crypto industry. The draft was issued with the aim of holding wide consultation with the ultimate goal of coming up with regulations for the licensing and supervision of crypto-asset services.

“The rules also included measures to safeguard customer interests, technology standards and cybersecurity risk management” the CBB noted.

According to TradeArabia, the new rules contain provisions which are focused on licensing, governance, minimum capital, control environment, risk management, AML/CFT, standards of business conduct, avoidance of conflicts of interest, reporting, and cyber security for crypto-asset services.

The CBB’s latest move shows attacking intent by Bahrain as the race for the regional fintech center hots up.

“We will continue to enhance our regulatory framework in order to keep pace with the innovations taking place in the major financial centers around the globe. The CBB’s introduction of the rules relating to crypto-assets is in line with its goal to develop comprehensive rules for the FinTech ecosystem supporting Bahrain’s position as a leading financial hub in the Mena region,” said Khalid Hamad, the Executive Director of the Banking Supervision Division within the CBB, which is tasked with the supervision of all banking institutions.

Concerning the exchanges, the new rules have regulated the “order matching, a pre and post-trade transparency, measures to avoid market manipulation and market abuse, as well as conflicts of interest”.

Last month, Newconomy reported on the joint initiative of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to implement the pilot cryptocurrency project which focuses on the cross-border payments and transactions. Furthermore, the pilot project seeks to see the impact of the central currency on the monetary policy of both countries.