Latham & Watkins has advised Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), a financial free zone in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), in crafting landmark regulations for Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) Foundations, propelling ADGM as a global hub for digital assets.
The regulations, published on November 1, 2023, present a worlds-first purpose-built legislative framework for establishing and operating DLT foundations for the use, deployment, development, facilitation, or support of DLT or issuance of tokens.
The regulations were developed following extensive benchmarking across a number of peer jurisdictions and incorporate DLT stakeholder feedback from ADGM’s April 2023 consultation paper. They aim to provide market players with ample governance flexibility within DLT foundations recognizing new realities in decentralization.
This regulatory adoption aligns with ADGM’s ongoing efforts to position itself, and the UAE more broadly, as frontrunners in global fintech and virtual asset regulation.
The Latham team was led by Dubai/Riyadh partner Brian Meenagh and London partners Stuart Davis and Andrew Moyle, with Dubai associate Ksenia Koroleva, Riyadh associate Matthew Rodwell, and London associate Sam Maxson leading on benchmarking and drafting. Advice was also provided by New York partner Stephen Wink, Hong Kong associate Zoe Wang, Singapore associate Gen Tan, and San Francisco associate Adam Zuckerman.
Stuart Davis, Global Co-Chair of Latham’s Digital Assets & Web3 Practice, commented: “This bespoke regime for DLT foundations, catering to a vast spectrum of blockchain and web3 use cases and decentralized business models, significantly advances the industry, reinforcing ADGM’s position as a leading market for blockchain innovation.”