Empowering innovation through responsible regulation of the virtual assets industry.

The Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA) is responsible for regulating and overseeing the provision, use, and exchange of virtual assets in and from the emirate of Dubai.

Regulations & Guidelines

VARA Full Market Product Regulations set out a comprehensive Virtual Asset framework.

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Licence Applications

To apply for a VARA licence all applicants follow a two-step process.

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Public Register

VARA publishes a list of licensed Virtual Asset Service Providers (VASP) in the emirate of Dubai.

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As the world's first independent regulator for virtual assets, VARA serves as a transparent and trusted guiding authority for the emerging world of virtual assets. VARA aims to take its mission global by creating an easy to replicate framework to regulate the industry.

Leveraging expertise from global experts and organisations and collaborating with relevant local financial regulatory authorities, VARA is helping to mitigate risk and facilitate cross-border operations and innovation to enable safe market adoption and growth.

The sustained growth of virtual assets requires robust regulation built on the principles of economic sustainability, consumer protection and cross-border financial security. VARA’s role is to provide a world-leading regulatory framework to protect investors, maintain high levels of risk assurance and facilitate virtual asset innovation in the emirate of Dubai.

VARA plays a vital role in Dubai's digital economy, acting as a trusted regulatory authority for the virtual asset space. By establishing international standards for virtual assets, VARA helps to ensure that Dubai maintains and further strengthens its position as a global leader in the world of digital finance.


News and announcements

See our latest news and announcements

29 May 2023

Regulated Virtual Assets Activities are now offered at DET branches

The Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA), in collaboration with the Department of Economy and Tourism (DET), hereby notify you that the Regulated Virtual Assets Activities, which were issued on 7 February 2023, are now offered at DET branches.
14 Apr 2023

Dubai's DET and Free DET and Free Zone Council activate applications for legacy virtual asset operators to become fully regulated under VARA

Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 14 April 2023: The Virtual Assets and Related Activities Regulations 2023, establishes clear requirements for the VA sector to be fully regulated under VARA in the Emirate of Dubai, including all businesses offering products and services associated with the sector. VARA is working closely with Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism (DET) and Free Zone Authorities (FZAs), towards meeting the set deadline of 30 April for all initial disclosure questionnaires (IDQs) across the sector to be received as the first step towards the migration of the market to a regulated regime.