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Abu Dhabi Global Market, ADGM, opened the applications for the third cohort of its Regulatory Laboratory, Reglab, which will run until May 10, 2018. The theme this time will focus on enhancing access to financial services for small and medium-sized enterprises, SME.

The UAE Ministry of Economy stated that the SME sector in the UAE represents a vast part of the market with more than 94 percent of the total number of companies operating in the country and 86 percent of jobs provided in the private sector’s workforce is from SMEs. The SME sector has become an essential part of the UAE’s plans for economic transformation and diversification.

The recent interest and international advancements in FinTech have had a great impact on the SME sector with improving financing opportunities. For example, open APIs allow FinTech startups to experiment with institutional data to better analyse, machine-learning analytics, innovative KYC solutions and cloud-based enterprise financial and risk management for SMEs.

That is why ADGM encourages FinTech and RegTech companies, particularly those that focus on SMEs to apply to be part of its RegLab. Including tech startups that offer services to both institutions and SMEs.

“It is encouraging that our RegLab today is the world’s 2nd most active FinTech sandbox globally. The ADGM RegLab has grown from strength to strength, doubling the number of accepted firms in its second cohort and we are excited to open up for the 3rd batch,” said Richard Teng, Chief Executive Officer of the Financial Services Regulatory Authority of ADGM

And he concluded by saying “Serving the SME sector is a key priority for ADGM since we began operations. Being at the forefront of innovation, it is clear to us that providing easier access to better data through powerful technologies such as Open APIs and artificial intelligence could fundamentally change the way the financial sector engages with this crucial part of the economy. Our focus on SMEs further underlines our commitment to the principles of leadership, innovation and nurturing the younger entrepreneurs and generation which is aligned with the spirit of the Year of Zayed,”