Wednesday 02, May 2018 by Jessica Combes

Blockchain set to improve Dubai’s FDI


Dubai's Department of Economic Development (DED) and Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority (DSOA) have collaborated to improve ease of doing business in Dubai and facilitate foreign direct investments (FDI). 

The joint blockchain project, Dubai Blockchain Business Registry Project  , developed in collaboration with Smart Dubai and IBM is aligned with the Dubai Blockchain Strategy, launched in 2016 by HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Executive Council of Dubai, seeking to establish Dubai as the first city to be fully powered by blockchain by 2020. 

The initiative seeks to empower the Unified Commercial Registry (UCR) project, the first blockchain-enabled trade license repository launched by DED, to store and update company registration information issued by DED as well as the free zone authorities in Dubai. 

The Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority, which is the regulatory body for Dubai Silicon Oasis (DSO), the integrated free zone technology park, will be the first free zone to implement the pilot project. 

Sami Al Qamzi, Director General of DED said that with the Blockchain Corporate Registry, investment as well as doing business in Dubai will become a seamless and smart experience, adding that the Registry provides a template for collaboration between government departments, government-related entities and the private sector to reinforce Dubai as a hub for business expansion and entrepreneurship. 

Aspiring to create an efficient, seamless, and impactful experience, the collaborative effort will streamline the process of setting up and operating a business, roll out digital exchange of trade licenses and related documentation for all business activities, and ensure regulatory compliance across Dubai’s business ecosystem. While DSO is the first free zone to share license information over blockchain, other entities will be able to query and publish data as required.  

“We see blockchain as an enabling foundation for providing seamless digital experiences to existing businesses and new investors and entrepreneurs. This initiative will enhance collaboration and efficiency among government entities and provide transparency, security and visibility in government transactions,” said Amr Refaat, General Manager, IBM Middle East. 

The IT Department in DED conducted extensive research and case studies with vendors to explore the best alternatives and options that help secure information, support open data and enable paperless processes in preparation for the Dubai Blockchain Corporate Registry. 

“The Blockchain initiative is a result of intensive research conducted by our IT team in collaboration with DSOA, IBM and the Smart Dubai office. We studied multiple options, case studies and researches aiming to achieve the best results in facilitating business registration in Dubai. The results are promising; we built the foundation for a first-of-its-kind unified business ledger where any entity locally and globally can join and be part of Dubai’s vision to be the Blockchain capital of the world as part of the Dubai Blockchain strategy 2016,” said Mohamed Alqaizi, IT Director in DED.


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