Global: UAE Initiates Historic Cross-Border Digital Dirham Payment, Transfers $13.6 Million to China

UAE Initiates Historic Cross-Border Digital Dirham Payment, Transfers $13.6 Million to China
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The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has achieved a groundbreaking milestone by completing its first cross-border payment using the Digital Dirham, transferring AED 50 million ($13.6 million) to China.

Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice President, Deputy Prime Minister, Chairman of the Presidential Court, and Chairman of the Board of the Central Bank of the UAE (CBUAE), initiated this historic cross-border payment during a celebration commemorating the CBUAE’s 50th Anniversary.

The payment, executed through the “mBridge,” marked a significant moment as Sheikh Mansour utilized the Central Bank’s digital currency, the “Digital Dirham,” for the direct transaction with China.

The mBridge leverages central bank digital currencies (CBDC) for international fund transfers among participating banks, utilizing distributed ledger technology (DLT), commonly known as “blockchain.”

In addition to this groundbreaking digital currency transaction, Sheikh Mansour witnessed the graduation of the inaugural batch of 1,056 Emirati citizens from the “Ethraa” program. This program, conducted at the Emirates Institute of Finance, aims to enhance Emirati representation in the financial sector by cultivating advanced national capacities.

The ceremony showcased the 50-year journey of the CBUAE, highlighting its contributions to financial and monetary stability, economic growth, and innovative projects under the Financial Infrastructure Transformation Programme (FIT program).

Speaking at the event, Sheikh Mansour emphasized the commitment of the UAE’s leadership to strengthen the country’s position as a global financial center. He acknowledged the role of the CBUAE in ensuring financial stability, fostering economic growth, and empowering national cadres in line with international standards.

Sheikh Mansour also explored the services provided by the “Aani” instant payment platform and witnessed the launch of “Open Finance,” facilitating data sharing across the financial ecosystem. Additionally, he participated in the unveiling of the visual identity of the Ombudsman Unit named “Sanadak” (“Your Support”), the first independent unit for settling banking and insurance disputes in the Middle East and North Africa.

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