In the region’s distressed and dysfunctional economies, cryptocurrencies have often become a lifeline for ordinary people, despite volatile prices and a risk of theft. By contrast, Gulf governments view crypto and other virtual assets as complementary to their efforts to establish their states as global financial centres.
- Rulings by Islamic religious authorities discouraging or banning crypto use will dampen potential growth.
- As criticism of the industry grows in the West and elsewhere, crypto-friendly regulations in the Gulf may attract global companies.
- In lieu of precedents, countries pioneering crypto regulation risk adopting poor and ineffective policies.