- Mohsen Al-Zahrani will oversee the Kingdom’s Virtual Asset Program.
- Riyadh banned banks from conducting cryptocurrency transactions in 2018.
In a sign of the Gulf state’s upcoming interest in cryptocurrencies, the Saudi banking regulator recently appointed Mohsen Al-Zahrani to head its virtual assets and central bank digital currency initiative.
Officials in Saudi Arabia have expressed concerns about the speculative nature of virtual assets, leading to a more cautious stance to date. It is becoming more urgent in Riyadh to adopt more formal laws for the asset class, despite the fact that the neighboring United Arab Emirates has become a global hub for cryptocurrencies.
Ziad Al-Youssef, Deputy Governor for Development and Technology at the Central Bank, told Al-Zahrani, the former managing director of the consulting firm Accenture:
They are part of a team in Riyadh that deals with some of the world’s largest crypto companies on future regulations.
Encouraging Saudi companies
The kingdom has been pressing companies to boost their presence in the capital as part of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s plans to develop Riyadh into a global hub, according to Bloomberg, which also indicated that representatives of same He did not return calls for comment.
Bloomberg reported that the kingdom is encouraging companies to increase their presence in the capital as part of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s plans to turn Riyadh into a major international hub. Spokesmen for the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency did not respond to requests for comment.
Riyadh banned banks from conducting cryptocurrency transactions in 2018, yet there are still ways to trade. Domestic financial institutions have reaffirmed restrictions in correspondence with clients in recent months.
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