A news report by Coin Telegraph reveals that the local government of Dubai has made the official launch of a state-sponsored cryptocurrency. The digital token, called emCash, will be available to citizens of the U.A.E. to pay for governmental and nongovernmental services alike. This historic first makes Dubai the first government to launch its own state cryptocurrency. Other nations have considered the possibility of doing a similar launch, but Dubai has become the first.

Token Has Legal Tender Status

Deputy Director General of Dubai Economy Ali Ibrahim indicated that the emCash token will be considered fully legal tender "for various government and non-government services, from their daily coffee and children's school fee to utility charges and money transfers." Dubai may have decided to move in the direction of a state digital currency because of the flexibility, convenience, and security that the token will allow. Dubai has made its position as a proponent of blockchain technology known for some time, and government officials have made it clear that they believe blockchain and cryptocurrencies to be a paradigm shift in the technological and financial worlds. With this launch, the Dubai government has become one of the most progressive nations in the world when it comes to digital currencies.

Ibrahim adds that "the fast-paced environment and incredible willingness to adopt innovative technology has made Dubai the perfect place for us to do business. This project is a great example of the ambition we have met here, together we are essentially creating a whole new economic ecosystem. It will harness blockchain technology to make financial transactions cheaper, faster, and more secure while demonstrating the huge advantages of embracing this technology for governments, business, and customers alike."

Dubai Sets Sights on Being a Fintech Leader

Dubai has long set a goal of becoming a fintech hub for much of the eastern part of the globe. The government recently signed deals which allow for bitcoin payments to be made in property sales. emCash is the result of a partnership between the city's economy department and a subsidiary called Emcredit Limited as well as the U.K.-based Object Tech Group, according to Futurism. Ibrahim explains that "a digital currency has varied advantages--faster processing, improved delivery time, less complexity and cost, to name a few. It will change the way people live and do business in Dubai, and mark a giant leap for the city in harnessing game-changing innovations to improve ease of business and quality of life."

Time will reveal whether other countries will follow in launching their own state-sponsored cryptocurrencies, and it may depend upon the successful adoption of emCash and Dubai as a prototypical example or test run of the possibilities.