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Bahrain central bank licenses Sharia-compliant crypto exchange

CoinMENA, a soon-to-launch cryptocurrency exchange headquartered in the Kingdom of Bahrain, has obtained a license from the Central Bank of Bahrain, or CBB.

The newly acquired “Crypto Assets Services Company License” allows CoinMENA to operate fully as a regulated crypto exchange and onshore platform, the company announced on Jan. 24. The CBB’s license ensures that CoinMENA meets all of the operational, technical and security requirements set by the central bank.

As CoinMENA plans to roll out its services in the Middle East and North Africa, or MENA, countries — including Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Oman — CoinMENA is also certified by the Shariyah Review Bureau as a Sharia-compliant platform.

At the launch, CoinMENA will support five major cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin (BTC), Ether (ETH), XRP, Litecoin (LTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH). The exchange will also feature an over-the-counter, or OTC, platform for larger transactions, providing customers with a dedicated manager overseeing every OTC trade.

Dina Sam’an, co-founder and managing director of CoinMENA, said that the company aims to expand to more countries after its launch:

“As CoinMENA grows, we will be providing access to additional digital assets and expanding the jurisdictions we operate in, with the view of becoming one of the leading digital assets exchanges on a global scale.”

CoinMENA has been working to launch its crypto trading platform for more than two years so far. In late 2019, CoinMENA appointed the Shariyah Review Bureau as an outsourcing facility to manage and supervise the Sharia certification and Sharia audit services for its digital asset platform.