Central Bank of UAE launches FIT Programme
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Central Bank of UAE launches Financial Infrastructure Transformation Programme

Central Bank of UAE launches Financial Infrastructure Transformation Programme

The first stage of the programme will see the launch of the Card Domestic Scheme, an instant payments platform, and the issuance of Central Bank Digital Currency

Central bank of UAE launches FIT Programme

The Central Bank of the UAE has launched the Financial Infrastructure Transformation Programme (FIT programme) to expedite digital transformation across the country’s financial services sector.

The programme comprises the implementation of nine key initiatives.

The first stage includes a series of digital payment infrastructures and services such as the launch of a Card Domestic Scheme, an instant payments platform, and the issuance of Central Bank Digital Currency for cross-border and domestic uses.

These digital payment initiatives will drive financial inclusion, promote payment innovation, security and efficiency, and achieve a cashless society.

Central bank of UAE to adopt data management solutions

As part of the FIT Programme, the Central Bank of the UAE will adopt advanced supervisory technologies and data management solutions to implement stringent supervisory processes and ensure financial stability.

The next stage of the FIT Programme is to develop and implement a number of digital infrastructures, including the establishment of a financial cloud, eKYC and open finance platforms.

These digital infrastructures will improve regulatory compliance, reduce the cost of operation, enhance innovation and customer experience, and most importantly, strengthen their security and operational resilience.

With a full integration set for 2026, the FIT Programme creates an important platform in support of the country’s ‘We the UAE 2031’ vision and National Digital Economy Strategy.

It also further reinforces the central bank’s mission to enhance monetary and financial stability and consumer protection through robust financial infrastructure and the adoption of digital technologies.

Khaled Mohamed Balama, governor of the Central Bank of the UAE, said: “The FIT Programme embodies the directions and aspirations of our wise leadership towards digitising the economy and developing the financial sector. We are proud to be building an infrastructure that will support a thriving UAE financial ecosystem and its future growth.”

He added: “We will work with our partners to implement the programme, achieve its goals, accelerate the adoption of digital services in the financial sector and attract the best talent.”

Further details and implementation updates of each pillar of the FIT Programme will be announced in due course.

The nine initiatives of the FIT programme

According to a statement released by the central bank, the initiatives of the FIT Programme are:

1. Card Domestic Scheme: The UAE’s first unified, secured, and efficient card payment platform to facilitate the growth of e-commerce and digital transactions
in the country.
2. eKYC: A secure and user-friendly platform to facilitate non-face-to-face customer onboarding and ongoing customer due diligence.
3. Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC): CBDC for both cross-border payments and domestic usage in order to address the problems and inefficiency of cross-border payments and help drive innovation for domestic payments respectively.
4. Open finance: Driving innovation and competitiveness as well as collaboration in the financial services sector through inter-connectivity and inter-operability
among all players and institutions.
5. Supervisory technology (SupTech): Advanced suptech supporting the regulatory and supervisory processes.
6. Innovation hub: A collaborative platform for engagement, research and development for fintechs.
7. Instant payments platform: A secure, efficient, and robust payment platform that will support financial inclusion and enable a cashless society through digital
8. Financial cloud: A secure, resilient, scalable, and reliable sovereign financial infrastructure.
9. Excellence and customer experience: Supporting exceptional customer experiences and fostering a culture of excellence across the financial sector.

In other news, the central bank raised the base rate applicable to the overnight deposit facility (ODF) by 25 basis points – from 4.4 per cent to 4.65 per cent, effective from February 2.

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