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    Abu Dhabi Global Market announces launch of digital sandbox to accelerate financial services innovation and financial inclusion in the UAE and the region

    ADGM FSRA 17/09/2018

    ADGM to partner with the ASEAN Financial Innovation Network to leverage on the global API Exchange (APIX) platform to drive financial inclusion globally; connecting financial institutions and FinTech firms in the MENA region with ASEAN and other Asia-Pacific participants via an open-architecture digital marketplace.

    Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), the International Financial Centre in Abu Dhabi, today announced an initiative to launch a FinTech digital sandbox.  The digital sandbox allows financial institutions (FIs) and FinTech innovators to come together to experiment on products and solutions in a digital platform environment, supported by regulatory standards developed by the Financial Services Regulatory Authority (FSRA) of ADGM.

    The ADGM digital sandbox will provide a marketplace for open collaboration between FIs, FinTech firms, and regulators to facilitate testing and adoption of innovative digital financial products and services that can benefit the industry in the region.

    The ADGM digital sandbox allows

    • FIs to source and procure FinTech solutions locally and globally, run tests digitally on the platform, and adopt and orchestrate the best ones that meet their business needs.
    • FinTechs to offer their innovative solutions to international market players, and tap cross-border market access and opportunities to grow and scale their business.
    • Participants in the UAE and regional markets to connect with other international markets and vice versa.

    One of the biggest challenges FIs encounter in their ability to embrace innovation relates to integration of their legacy banking systems with the FinTechs’ solutions.  The ADGM digital sandbox will support and enable APIs that connect legacy systems of FIs to FinTechs in a cost-effective and scalable manner, with synthetic data hosted on the cloud in a secure manner.  To promote industry adoption, interoperability, financial inclusion and convergence to higher standards, the FSRA of ADGM will develop guidance on the standards and IT security requirements for open APIs and cloud adoption.

    Based on FSRA's regulatory standards for the usage of the platform, it will be able to provide a regulated environment for experimentation.  With the advent of innovative supervisory technology, FSRA will be able to leverage the digital sandbox to supervise the test activities of FinTech participants that are licensed in its Regulatory Laboratory (RegLab) in real time.

    As part of ADGM's commitment to foster a global marketplace for digital transformation and financial inclusion, ADGM will partner with the ASEAN Financial Innovation Network (AFIN) to leverage on the global API Exchange (APIX) platform to bring together FIs and FinTech firms between the MENA region and the Asia-Pacific region onto an online digital platform enabled by open APIs.

    Richard Teng, CEO of ADGM's Financial Services Regulatory Authority, said: "As a FinTech Hub, ADGM is consistently looking at innovative ways to serve and anticipate the needs of its stakeholders.  The objective of the digital sandbox is to help FIs build deep digital capabilities to tap market opportunities, and promote financial inclusion through innovative technologies to better cater to the underserved population in the MENA region.  Our partnership with AFIN will enable ADGM to drive and further accelerate the financial inclusion agenda, and expand access to financial services in Abu Dhabi, regionally and globally. ADGM will continue to actively engage the industry, keep abreast of regulatory developments, innovate, and introduce appropriate initiatives to enhance the FinTech ecosystem in Abu Dhabi and for the region."

    About Abu Dhabi Global Market

    Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), an international financial centre (IFC) located in the capital city of the United Arab Emirates, opened for business on 21 October 2015.  Established by UAE Federal Decree as a broad-based financial centre, ADGM augments Abu Dhabi's position as a global hub for business and finance and serves as a strategic link between the growing economies of the Middle East, Africa and South Asia and the rest of the world.

    ADGM's strategy is anchored by Abu Dhabi's key strengths including private banking, wealth management, asset management and financial innovation. Comprising three independent authorities: ADGM Courts, the Financial Services Regulatory Authority and the Registration Authority, ADGM as IFC governs the Al Maryah Island which is a designated financial free zone. It enables registered financial institutions, companies and entities to operate, innovate and success within an international regulatory framework based on Common Law. Since its inception, ADGM has been awarded the "Financial Centre of the Year (MENA)" for two consecutive years for its initiatives and contributions to the financial and capital markets industry in the region.*

    For more details of ADGM, please visit www.adgm.com or follow us on Twitter : @adglobalmarket and Linkedin : ADGM
    * Source : The Global Investor Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Awards

    For further enquiries, please contact:

    Joan Lew, Senior Manager, Communications
    Email: joan.lew@adgm.com, Tel: +971 2 333 8858
    Online: www.adgm.com