In a significant move that underscores Singapore’s commitment to fostering a robust cryptocurrency ecosystem, Blockchain.com, a leading crypto exchange, has secured a payments license from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). This development not only solidifies Blockchain.com’s position in the Asian market but also highlights the city-state’s strategic approach to integrating digital currencies into its financial framework.
A Milestone for Blockchain.com
Blockchain.com announced on August 7th that it had been granted a significant payment institution (MPI) license by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). This license, officially awarded on August 1st, empowers the platform to offer digital payment token services, specifically catering to institutional and accredited investors.
This achievement is particularly noteworthy as it follows the in-principal approval that the exchange had received from the central bank in September of the previous year. With this full license, Blockchain.com has joined the ranks of the twelve recognized digital payment token service providers in Singapore. This elite group includes other prominent names such as Circle, Independent Reserve, Paxos, Revolut, and DBS Vickers.
Singapore’s Vision: Becoming a Crypto Hub
Singapore’s proactive approach to cryptocurrency and blockchain technology is evident in its regulatory decisions and financial commitments. The city-state has been making concerted efforts to position itself as a global hub for crypto enterprises and innovations.
Recent approvals by MAS further illustrate this commitment. For instance, in June, blockchain-based payments firm Ripple received an in-principal approval for an MPI license to extend its crypto services. Additionally, the local entity of USD Coin issuer, Circle, was granted its MPI license in the same month, a mere seven months after obtaining its in-principal approval.
On August 7th, in a move that further underscores its dedication to the fintech sector, MAS announced a commitment of approximately $112 million, which translates to around 150 million Singapore dollars. This fund is earmarked to bolster the financial technology sector, with a particular emphasis on Web3 technologies.
Furthermore, the regulator has been proactive in introducing measures to ensure the safety and security of investors and users. In July, new regulations were rolled out, mandating crypto service providers to hold customer funds in a statutory trust. This requirement is expected to be fully implemented by the end of the current year.
Global Perspective: Singapore’s Rising Stature in the Crypto World
While the United States continues to dominate in crypto startup funding, as evidenced by a report from Galaxy Digital in July, Singapore is rapidly emerging as a critical player in the global crypto landscape. The report highlighted that in the second quarter of 2022, Singapore-based crypto firms were third in line in funding, only behind the United States and the United Kingdom.
This rising stature can be attributed to the city-state’s strategic approach to cryptocurrency and blockchain technology. By offering a conducive environment, transparent regulations, and financial support, Singapore is attracting established crypto enterprises and fostering the growth of startups and innovative solutions in the domain.
Blockchain.com’s recent acquisition of the MPI license from MAS is a testament to both the exchange’s growth trajectory and Singapore’s vision of becoming a leading crypto hub. As the landscape of digital currencies continues to evolve, it will be interesting to observe how Singapore further solidifies its position in this dynamic sector.