As global financial institutions accelerate their involvement in the rapidly-emerging crypto space, Singapore’s central bank – the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) – is looking to cement the country’s position as a key player in the global crypto economy.
As a result, MAS is putting a clear regulatory framework and requirement for players to handle risks in the volatile crypto space. Mr Ravi Menon, managing director of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), said: “We think the best approach is not to clamp down or ban these things”.
Different countries have adopted different approaches to dealing with crypto regulations. Singapore has been largely open to accepting cryptocurrencies in the country’s financial ecosystem. Apart from Singapore, countries like Japan are more open to allowing crypto investment products.
Also, U.S. regulators have increased their involvement in the emerging crypto space. MAS managing director Mr. Menon further added:
“With crypto-based activities, it is basically an investment in a prospective future, the shape of which is not clear at this point. But not to get into this game, I think risks Singapore being left behind. Getting early into that game means we can have a head start, and better understand its potential benefits as well as its risks.”
Making Singapore a Global Crypto Economy
Over the last decade, Singapore has emerged as a financial epicenter in Asia. As the country seeks to become a global crypto economy, it is taking measures to counter risks involving the illicit flow of funds. Mr. Menon said:
The city state is “interested in developing crypto technology, understanding blockchain, smart contracts and preparing ourselves for a Web 3.0 world”.
Singapore’s regulatory approach for crypto has attracted several crypto firms. Popular players like Binance and Gemini have set up offices in the market. The MAS chief believes that having a well-regulated crypto industry could bring benefits beyond the traditional financial sector.
“If and when a crypto economy takes off in a way, we want to be one of the leading players,” he said. “It could help create jobs, create value-add, and I think more than the financial sector, the other sectors of the economy will potentially gain.”