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Singapore: Did the MAS open the floodgates with latest round of crypto-licenses

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DBS Vickers, the venture arm of DBS Bank, has been granted a crypto-license from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). Additionally, the Australian cryptocurrency exchange Independent Reserve became the first foreign business to receive licensing approval.

The licenses will now allow the businesses to provide digital payment token (DPT) services.

It is reported that close to 170 applicants are still waiting for similar license approvals. Meanwhile, some businesses are operating within an exemption limit under the Payment Services Act. The exemption limit is a transition window till an application is approved or rejected by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) or withdrawn by the business.

Last month, FOMO Pay was issued a crypto-license by the city-state.

This is a milestone development since the licensees will be able to operate within the Digital Data Exchange (DDEx) guidelines by using digital payment tokens. DBS’s Head of Capital Markets, Eng-Kwok Seat Moey, said in the statement,

“This marks another significant milestone in our ability to provide integrated solutions across the digital asset value chain, from deal origination to tokenization, listing, trading and custody.”

He added that the approval “coupled with recent enhancements to DDEx such as round-the-clock operations since August, could add to DDEx’s volumes in the coming months.”

The Asian country has become a frontrunner in crypto-adoption on the back of a clear regulatory framework. The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) grants licenses and regulates the sector under the Payment Services Act (PSA). Additionally, all crypto-platforms in Singapore need to adhere to anti-money laundering and counter-financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) controls.

Last month, the MAS ordered Binance to cease providing payment services to Singapore residents due to a lack of an operating license.

Owing to favorable regulations, Australia-based Independent Reserve had set up its first overseas headquarters in Singapore in 2019. The company, in fact, plans to make Singapore its ASEAN headquarters.
According to Independent Reserve’s Chief Executive Adrian Przelozny,

“A well-regulated environment will benefit both investors and crypto industry stakeholders. With tailormade rules for the crypto industry, Singapore currently has the clearest and most detailed licensing requirements of any jurisdiction in Asia.”


Shraddha is a full-time journalist at AMBCrypto. She has a keen interest in personal finance and wealth generation. Her primary focus is on the cryptocurrency space's applications for investment vehicles and portfolios
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