Six UAE and Saudi Arabian Banks Join Digital Currency Cross-Border Transaction Project

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Six commercial banks from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have joined a digital currency project, major Saudi Arabian financial news portal Argaam reports on Feb. 5

Referring to comments from the UAE central bank (UAECB), Agraam notes that the goal of the project is to use cryptocurrency for financing transactions between Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

The news about developing a cryptocurrency by the two aforementioned countries came in December 2018, when UAECB and Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) had announced that the countries intended to use cryptocurrency for cross-border transactions.

Today’s news underlines that six unnamed commercial banks will join the interbank digital currency project, dubbed Aber, with a scheduled implementation during next 12 months. The article also adds:

“The currency’s official issuance is conditional on the outcomes of the “proof-of-concept” stage. The Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) and the UAECB will decide on the feasibility of the currency’s practical applications.”

Last month, Saudi Arabia and the UAE made an announcement that the two countries have agreed to cooperate on joint cryptocurrency development targeted to better understand the development of blockchain technology, Cointelegraph wrote on Jan. 20.  

As Cointelegraph reported back in October, the Dubai government also intends to use a digital currency backed by the state and pegged to the UAE’s fiat currency, the dirham, for utilities payments.