It is being reported that the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange has issued what they have called a "thought paper" on issuing digital assets as well as on the technological infrastructure required to make this happen. The paper was issued in conjunction with both the Central Securities Depositories and the International Securities Service Association (ISSA). In the paper, the exchange tried to determine exactly what would be required to issue digital assets from the standpoint of technical and operational details as well as what it would need to do in order to support financial institutions during the process. Rashed Al Blooshi, who is the CEO of the exchange, said that it was continuing to manage the transition from traditional assets to those that are more encrypted. He went on to say that the latter form of assets is experiencing a dramatic development particularly in the region. He further added that, in order to raise investor confidence and avoid market fragmentation, market infrastructure needs to be improved and that governance standards have to be developed. The exchange is a member of ISSA's Central Securities Depositories Working Group, and through this membership Blooshi mentioned that the exchange would continue developing and implementing a variety of blockchain-related projects. Last month, the national securities regulator of the United Arab Emirates indicated that the country intends to introduce initial coin offerings (ICOs) next year in its capital markets. They have already been drafting a set of ICO regulations in coordination with a group of international advisers, and as the board of the Emirates Securities and Commodities Authority has deemed that ICOs can be considered securities, they have been working with stock markets in both Dubai and Abu Dhabi to develop ICO trading platforms. This past September, Richard Teng — who is the top financial regulator of Abu Dhabi — stated that he wanted to introduce what he called "proper" regulation of cryptocurrencies on an international level. He said that this was needed because cryptocurrency theft and loss adversely affects the image of the asset. He also said that, without regulation, "there is the risk of financial crime."