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Acquiring Your Crypto Exchange License in Dubai: by Consulting24

  • Primary Company Establishment Services:

  • Assistance for Cryptocurrency Licensing;

  • Support with AML/CTF Documentation Preparation;

  • Guidance for Application Submission;

    Cost: 20,000€

    Kindly note, this is exclusive of government fees which range from 30,000-80,000€.

Image representing crypto exchange license Dubai and Dubai Marina

Our Clients 

Crypto Exchange License in Dubai

The Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA), accessible at www.vara.ae, functions as the ruling entity tasked with supervising the issuance, utilization, and exchange of digital assets that either originate from or are circulated within Dubai's Emirate.

Government of Dubai logo
Vara.ae Brand Logo

Available Licenses:
 

  • Advisory Services

  • Broker-Dealer Services

  • Custody Services

  • Exchange Services

  • Lending and Borrowing Services

  • VA Management and Investment Services

  • VA Transfer and Settlement Services

A Quick Review of Cryptocurrency Licensing in Dubai

Image representing crypto exchange license Dubai and Burj Khalifa

When seeking a cryptocurrency license in Dubai (excluding DIFC), you primarily have two avenues: apply through mainland companies or leverage the benefits of the Dubai Free Zone Authority (FZA).

The process of securing a cryptocurrency license in Dubai starts with the filing of the Initial Approval Application. This important step involves the submission of all necessary documents and information as stipulated by the regulatory bodies. The submitted application is then evaluated for compliance and suitability based on the defined regulations. Achieving Initial Approval is a significant step that paves the way for the subsequent stages of the license registration process. Our team of seasoned professionals will support you throughout this stage, ensuring a smooth and productive application submission.

Stage 1 - Submitting the Initial Approval Application

Step 1: Company Registration

Kick off by submitting requisite documents and data for company registration, which forms the legal foundation and readies you for the next phases.
 

Step 2: Complete the Initial Disclosure Questionnaire

With registration underway, the next task is to accurately fill out and submit the Initial Disclosure Questionnaire, collecting key business data for regulatory compliance.
 

Step 3: Formulate a Detailed Business Plan

Craft a comprehensive business plan showcasing your company's objectives, financial projections, and strategies for cryptocurrency integration, bolstering your application's credibility.
 

Step 4: Provide Detailed Ownership and Management Information

Offer detailed, precise information regarding the beneficial owners and senior management of your business. This fosters transparency and is crucial for regulatory analysis.
 

Step 5: Pay the Initial 50% of Fees

To proceed with the registration, an initial payment of the fees is obligatory. These fees encompass administrative costs and signal your commitment.
 

Once these phases are successfully completed, your company is ready to secure the necessary approvals, finalize operational setup, and adhere to legal obligations. Note that offering services during this time is prohibited.

Stage 2 - Submitting the Full Market Product (FMP) License Application

Step 1: Following Initial Approval, prepare and provide the necessary documents as per VARA's specifications for the Full Market Product (FMP) license. Be prepared for further examination from VARA, which could involve additional document requests or meetings.
 

Step 2: Thoroughly address all VARA feedback and fulfill any extra requirements, then settle the balance of the license application fees, including the supervision fees for the first year.
 

Step 3: Once all financial obligations are met and all stipulated operational prerequisites are satisfied, the company is granted the FMP license, enabling them to commence Virtual Asset operations.
 

Bear in mind: VARA may link specific operational conditions to the FMP license.

Government Fees

VA Activity
Licence Application Fee
Licence Extension Fee
Annual Supervision Fee
Share Capital
VA Transfer and Settlement Services
AED 40,000 10,900$
AED 20,000 5,450$
AED 80,000 21,800$
The higher of [i] AED 500,000; or [ii] 25% of fixed annual overheads.
Advisory Services
AED 40,000 10,900$
AED 20,000 5,450$
AED 80,000 21,800$
AED 100,000.
Broker-Dealer Services
AED 100,000 27,250$
AED 50,000 27,250$
AED 200,000 54,500$
Broker-Dealer Services using a VASP Licensed by VARA to provide Custody Services or otherwise approved during the licensing process: the higher of [i] AED 400,000; or [ii] 15% of fixed annual overheads. In all other instances, the higher of [i] AED 600,000; or [ii] 25% of fixed annual overheads.
Custody Services
AED 100,000 27,250$
AED 50,000 27,250$
AED 200,000 54,500$
The higher of [i] AED 600,000; or [ii] 25% of fixed annual overheads.
Exchange Services
AED 100,000 27,250$
AED 50,000 27,250$
AED 200,000 54,500$
Exchange Services using a VASP Licensed by VARA to provide Custody Services or otherwise approved during the licensing process: the higher of [i] AED 800,000; or [ii] 15% of fixed annual overheads. In all other instances, the higher of [i] AED 1,500,000; or [ii] 25% of fixed annual overheads.
Lending and Borrowing Services
AED 100,000 27,250$
AED 50,000 27,250$
AED 200,000 54,500$
The higher of [i] AED 500,000; or [ii] 25% of fixed annual overheads.
VA Management and Investment Services
AED 100,000 27,250$
AED 50,000 27,250$
AED 200,000 54,500$
VA Management and Investment Services using a VASP Licensed by VARA to provide Custody Services or otherwise approved during the licensing process: the higher of [i] AED 280,000; or [ii] 15% of fixed annual overheads. In all other instances, the higher of [i] AED 500,000; or [ii] 25% of fixed annual overheads.

If the cost of obtaining a crypto license in Dubai feels overwhelming, consider Lithuania as a cost-effective substitute. It provides a simpler path to crypto licensing, coupled with an uncomplicated bank account opening procedure. With a setup duration of only 30 to 60 days, Lithuania offers both efficiency and affordability.

fees

Dubai, Lithuania, Estonia: A Comparative Exploration of Cryptocurrency Licensing

Feature
Dubai
Lithuania
Estonia
Cost
20 000€
20 000€
25 000€
License Type & Government fee
1. 9,700€ - Advisory Services & VA Transfer and Settlement Services
1. Cryptocurrency exchange license 2. Crypto wallet and custodian services license
1. Cryptocurrency exchange license 2. Crypto wallet and custodian services license
2. 24,250€ - Broker-Dealer, Custody, Exchange, Lending and Borrowing & VA Management and Investment Services
No additional fee
10 000€
Audit
May be required by VARA
Not required
Monthly and yearly are needed
Office
Required
Can be virtual
Required
AML (Anti-Money Laundry Officer)
Can be any nationality
Local needed
Local needed
AML monthly salary
5000€
Starting from 1200€
Starting from 2000€
Local director
Can be any nationality
Can be any nationality
Can be of any nationality, but have to live in Estonia
Share capital terms
Immidiately
25% now, 75% within a year.
Immediately
Required share capital
24,250€ (Advisory Services) - 194,000€ (Exchange Services)
125 000€
100 000€ - Crypto wallet and custodian services license. 250000€ - Cryptocurrency exchange license
compare

Our Team 

Lena Elvbakken, Founder  of Consulting24, is leading the way with the registration of crypto exchange license Dubai
Lena Elvbakken
Co-Founder
  • LinkedIn

"Capitalize on our tailored services, honed to support businesses navigating the digital currency landscape. We streamline the path to acquiring a cryptocurrency license in Dubai, utilizing our in-depth regulatory knowledge for a smooth licensing journey. Trust our experience to guide you through Dubai's intricate regulatory web, propelling the expansion of your crypto operations."

Mardo Soo, Consulting24's CEO, is leading the way with the registration of the crypto exchange license Dubai
Mardo Soo
Founder
  • LinkedIn

"As the leader of Consulting24, my core mission is to guide entrepreneurs through Dubai's intricate crypto licensing journey with ease. We streamline this complex task while efficiently managing your expenses. Our promise is to help you smoothly transition into Dubai's dynamic crypto market while ensuring the licensing costs are affordable. Rely on our expertise for a cost-conscious path towards your Dubai crypto license."

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