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Bahrain’s emerging role as a regional fintech hub in OBG report

Bahrain’s successful efforts to attract foreign direct investment for fintech innovation and other segments of the economy with high growth potential will be mapped out in a report soon. To be published by the global research and advisory company Oxford Business Group (OBG), The Report: Bahrain 2023 will track the strides being taken by the kingdom to further enhance its business environment, which helped to attract a record $1.1 billion in direct investment in 2022 (Bahrain Economic Development Board). It will shine a spotlight on the areas of the economy identified as ripe for development, which range from financial services and ICT to logistics, manufacturing and tourism. Regulatory sandbox Fintech’s increasing contribution to growth will be a key focal point. The report will chart the far-reaching measures introduced to support the segment’s development, which include the setting up of a regulatory sandbox and new rules for emerging technologies, such as open banking, debt- and equity-based crowdfunding, and the crypto-asset module. To support its analysis, OBG has signed a first-time memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Bahrain FinTech Bay. Under the agreement, the regional fintech hub will contribute to The Report: Bahrain 2023 and other content for the OBG’s suite of research tools. The MoU was signed by Suzy Al Zeerah, Chief Operating Officer of Bahrain FinTech Bay, and Fernanda Braz, OBG’s Country Director in Bahrain. Immense potential Al Zeerah said: “In Bahrain we recognise the immense potential of fintech to drive innovation, enhance efficiency and transform our economy. As we continue to embrace the digital age, fintech will play an increasingly critical role in ensuring that we remain at the forefront of innovation and growth. We see fintech as a key driver for digitalizing our economy as part of Bahrain’s Economic Vision 2030 and are optimistic about future projects that will take this industry forward.” “Oxford Business Group is known for producing high-calibre research tools on fast-growing markets and their investment potential. We’re thrilled to be partnering with its representatives on this highly anticipated report to promote the national and regional fintech industry’s underlying opportunities,” she added. Welcoming the Bahrain FinTech Bay on board, Braz said the kingdom’s efforts to position itself as a fintech hub were advancing rapidly, buoyed by its competitive advantages, which include a strategic location, highly capable workforce, strong regulatory framework and supportive ecosystem. Key role “Bahrain FinTech Bay is playing a key role in supporting the development of the regional fintech industry, providing resources and services to both startups and investors, while fostering a range of initiatives across emerging tech fields,” she said. “I’m delighted to have its experts’ input for our research, which will enable us to highlight the investment potential of this important financial services segment and share a broad range of valuable insights with our subscribers.” The Report: Bahrain 2023 will be produced with Bahrain FinTech Bay, Bahrain Bourse, KPMG and Zu’bi and partners. It will contain contributions from leading personalities in the public and private sectors. The Report: Bahrain 2023 will mark the culmination of several months of field research by a team of analysts from Oxford Business Group. It will be a vital guide to the many facets of the kingdom, including its macroeconomics, infrastructure, banking and other sectoral developments.


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