Dubai’s DIFC grows

The Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), one of the leading global financial centres in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA) region, has grown in the first half of 2022.

A total of 537 new entities registered during the first half of this year, representing an 11 per cent year-to-date increase. The total number of companies operating in DIFC has gone up from 3,297 to 4,031 at the end of June 2022, an increase of 22 per cent year-on-year.

The Centre is now home to 1,252 financial and innovation related companies, an increase of 22 per cent from the same period in 2021. FinTech and innovation companies jumped from 406 to 599, a 23 per cent increase year-on-year.

During the first half of this year, changes to DIFC laws and regulations included amendments to its globally recognised data protection law. In alignment with the country’s vision to become a global benchmark in Open Finance, DIFC established the region’s first Open Finance Lab, following an agreement with the Central Bank of the UAE. Furthermore, DIFC expanded its Innovation Hub proposition by launching a global Venture Studios hub and introducing a USD100m Venture Debt Fund.

The Centre also claims to have generated a new wave of interest in Dubai from US financial services companies, following its successful roadshow with senior executives from more than 100 American financial services and technology companies in attendance. In addition, the Republic of Türkiye Roadshow witnessed a series of strategic meetings with key clients and partners in Istanbul in a move to create strong partnerships with companies in the Republic of Türkiye. DIFC also held a successful roundtable in Tel Aviv, Israel, with 30 prospective clients across a wide range of businesses in the financial services sector.

Amongst its 4,031 entities, DIFC is currently home to 17 of the world’s top 20 banks, 25 of the world’s top 30 global systemically important banks, five of the top 10 insurance companies, five of the top 10 asset managers, and many leading global law and consulting firms.