China and UAE Pledge Joint Effort to Combat Cryptocurrency Crimes

China and UAE Pledge Joint Effort to Combat Cryptocurrency Crimes

China and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have announced a renewed commitment to jointly address the growing issue of cybercrime related to cryptocurrency. This pledge was formalized through a joint statement on May 30, following the state visit of UAE President Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan to China.

The commitment comes amid rising concerns over a surge in crypto-related fraud, as evidenced by recent data from Hong Kong showing an increase in such activities between 2022 and 2023. The joint statement highlighted critical areas of concern, including telecommunications network fraud and online gambling. Both nations emphasized their determination to curb illegal activities exploiting cryptocurrencies.

In addition to cybercrime, China and the UAE reiterated their commitment to combatting broader criminal activities such as money laundering, human trafficking, drug trafficking, and illegal immigration. This comprehensive approach aims to tackle illicit financial flows that may involve digital assets.

While the statement did not specify particular regulations targeting cryptocurrency, it signaled a coordinated effort by both countries to prevent the misuse of crypto technologies.

Beyond addressing security concerns, the joint statement also underscored the importance of strengthening bilateral trade and investment partnerships. Both nations committed to fostering trade, facilitating investment, and promoting tourism through the Joint Economic and Trade Committee.

A significant aspect of the joint statement was the acknowledgment of central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) in enhancing cross-border trade and investment. China and the UAE expressed their dedication to deepening bilateral and multilateral cooperation under the Memorandum of Understanding on Strengthening Central Bank Digital Currency Cooperation, signed by their respective central banks.

China commended the UAE for its pioneering achievement in completing the first direct cross-border CBDC transaction. This milestone involved the “Digital Dirham,” valued at 50 million dirhams, conducted through the “Multilateral Central Bank Digital Currency Bridge (mBridge)” platform. This significant transaction has opened new opportunities for trade and investment between the two nations.

According to earlier reports by, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) is already engaged in two CBDC-related projects: MBridge and e-HKD. The central banks of Hong Kong, China, Thailand, and the UAE, in collaboration with HKMA, are developing mBridge, a cross-border CBDC initiative. This project, expected to launch by mid-2024, aims to offer an alternative to Swift’s dominant payment infrastructure and could lead to further fragmentation of payment systems across different regions.

Additionally, HKMA is working on the e-HKD project, a digital currency that has demonstrated various use cases, including payments, deposits, and investment scenarios.

Through these coordinated efforts, China and the UAE aim to strengthen their financial systems, enhance security, and foster economic collaboration, reflecting their shared vision for the future of digital currencies and trade.

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