The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) — the country's de-facto central bank — is working to ensure that cryptocurrency startups can use local banks’ services as part of an initiative to develop financial technologies in its jurisdiction.
In an interview to Bloomberg on Tuesday, Ravi Menon, the managing director of Singapore’s central bank, said that his department was trying to “bring banks and cryptocurrency fintech startups together” to see if they could reach some kind of mutual understanding.
Menon added that the most serious problem that Singapore crypto startups currently have to deal with is that traditional banks refuse to open accounts for them because some aspects of this industry seem to be “obscure and dangerous” for regulators and financial institutions.
"The nature of this business is a bit different, so banks may need to employ other ways in which they can establish bona fide," Menon told Bloomberg.“I hope we can bring minds together on this so that we can get over this hurdle”.
At the same time, according to Menon, this initiative does not mean that MAS is going to introduce a favorable legal regime simply to attract crypto startups to the country.
He claims that the central bank of Singapore does not plan to develop a licensing scheme for crypto exchanges following Japan’s example, which issued licenses to 16 companies even helping them to get bank support.
In mid-September, it became known that the Binance crypto exchange, the world's largest in terms of trading volume, plans to open a trading platform in Singapore that will allow exchanging fiat for digital currencies and vice versa. In the interview with Ihodl.com, the Head of International Markets at Binance, Ted Lin has confirmed that pairs will be introduced alongside the Singapore dollar.
“Singapore is very much a legal framework heavy country, so any financial institutions or services will have to comply by the regulations and that means for fiat to crypto exchanges KYC or any kind of transaction monitoring will apply”, — he said.
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