UAE’s Fintech Sector Endorsed by a Plethora of Industry Gurus and Government Bodies

The UAE’s fintech sector has received support from the Ministry of Economy, government bodies such as Smart Dubai, Dubai Technology Entrepreneur Campus (Dtec), DIFC, and banking sector etc. In 2018, MAGNiTT had listed 142 startups of Fintech in the UAE. The number of these startups had increased 33% in 2018 as compared to 2017. During the first half of this year, Fintech scored maximum business and received the largest number of investments which were 9% more as compared to the same time period in 2018.

Navin Gupta, managing director of Ripple and adviser to Mena Fintech Association, said: "At Ripple, we focus on solving inefficiencies in key corridors where payment flows are significant and growing. The UAE's fintech sector is a prime example of one such corridor where advancements to achieve instant, low-cost payments for millions of customers occur every day. This industry disruption, in turn, motivates banks to keep up - creating a two-way hub for fintech innovation in which the UAE is the epicenter." 

Fintech has emerged as a sector that makes the movement of finances very easy without compromising on the quality of its service and security. Cloud based startups relating to big data, artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain technologies are going to make a huge difference in business market.

Mark Chahwan, co-founder and CEO of Sarwa, praised the UAE’s support for fintech sector through practical implementations. He said that the UAE has the right infrastructure to accommodate the fintech sector. The growth of this sector largely depends on the efforts across the private and public sector and the diverse population of UAE has created a pool of talented individuals that are bringing a lot of different ideas and innovation. To support such startups, the government of the UAE is also working on providing incentives while lowering costs on setting up.

The UAE has become the perfect testing ground for fintech due to the high living standard, high income per capita and high data penetration there. Philip Bahoshy, founder and CEO of MAGNiTT has said that the government of UAE has launched several programs to support fintech in UAE, such as the Fintech Hive, the $100M Fintech Fund in DIFC, and the regulatory sandboxes. However, the UAE’s fintech is not only restricted to this region as it has now gained international attention. UK-based Michael O'Loughlin, vice president of global solutions, Token, Inc, has also appreciated the close relationship between government, central bank and emerging fintech community. She stated that the UAE is the perfect hub for foreign direct investment. Dhruba Jyoti Sengupta, co-founder of BankonUs also said that the UAE has all the ingredients that are required to become a strong fintech hub.

Nameer Khan, Chairman and founding board member of Mena Fintech Association said that, "The recent groundbreaking Chinese visit, led to great developments with ADIO signing an agreement to bring in Sensetime and ADGM has entered into an MoU with OneConnect of PingAn group to collaborate on FinTech development and innovation."

The UAE's fintech sector is making sure that the government is making all the stake holders come forward to help turn its business sector into a strong and healthy startup ecosystem.