Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) Grants its First Approval to A Crypto Exchange

Cryptocurrency exchange Independent Reserve has been granted an “in-principle approval” under the Payment Services Act by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).

Under this license, the 2013-founded Independent Reserve is allowed to operate as a regulated provider for Digital Payment Token services.

According to the company, it is one of the first crypto service providers to obtain approval for a Major Payment Institution License in Singapore.

According to CEO Adrian Przelozny, this status provides certainty and security for their customers.

Last week, Senior Minister and MAS chairman Tharman Shanmugaratnam said that several applicants were in the final stages of review to get a license to operate as digital payment token service providers.

Ever since the Payment Services Act came into effect in January last year, hundreds of applicants have applied for the license. However, 30 applicants withdrew after engagement with MAS while two had been rejected, said Tharman at the time.

The Act requires all providers of DPT services operating in Singapore to be registered and licensed. It gives MAS supervisory authority over payment firms, including crypto exchanges, to ensure they are compliant with AML and CFT requirements.

A few weeks back, the regulator had said that applicants would be “subject to close scrutiny in the licensing process and ongoing supervision by MAS.”

Meanwhile, about 90 service providers are operating under an exemption from holding a license, including Binance.

In early April, Tharman said Singapore’s crypto market is small compared to its stocks and bonds market. The combined peak daily trading volume of three major crypto assets; BTC, ETH, and XRP was just 2% of the average daily trading volume of securities on the Singapore Exchange in 2020, he said.

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