The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has announced new anti-money laundering (AML) and counterterrorist-financing (CTF) rules for cryptocurrency firms.
According to MAS, the new rule is an update of the Singaporean regulatory framework for digital-payments-services and will be enforced immediately. From now on, cryptocurrency businesses operating in Singapore will need to register and be licensed to continue operating in the country.
MAS Assistant MD, Loo Siew Yee, commented on the Payment Services Act. According to her, it provides a flexible regulatory framework for crypto payments firms. She said that the Payment Services Act will facilitate growth and innovation. Concurrently, it’ll mitigate risk and foster confidence in the payments landscape.
That said, crypto firms in the country reportedly have a month to register with MAS. Additionally, once they do so, businesses will have six months to apply for a payment institution license.
Mr Ong Ye Kung, minister for education, previously said that “services that MAS will now be regulating are domestic money transfers.”
“Also, we will be among the first few financial services regulators in the world to introduce a regulatory framework for digital payment token services,” he added.
Notably, back in October 2018, the watchdog made a promise. Particularly, that it would help local cryptocurrency companies get traditional bank accounts.
Singapore fintech ecosystem
Singapore is famous for its expanding fintech ecosystem. And blockchain technology playing a significant part in the process.
Earlier this year, a report found that blockchain development was the fastest-growing skill in Singapore. Besides, the Singaporean government said it would provide seed funding for companies. The goal is to develop a blockchain platform to connect all industry stakeholders.
Notably, the JP Morgan banking firm also announced a collaboration with MAS to create a blockchain model that would improve cross-border payments. The firm disclosed that the blockchain prototype will enable payments in several currencies.
MAS, CFO, Sopnendu Mohanty, said that payment based on decentralized technology has improved cost efficiency, creating unique opportunities for businesses.