Singapore’s MAS Grants Coinbase Full Payment License
Coinbase, a leading cryptocurrency exchange based in the US, has secured a full payment license from Singapore’s Monetary Authority (MAS). This development marks a significant milestone for Coinbase in its quest to expand its services and influence in the rapidly-growing Asian crypto market.
Details of the License
The Major Payment Institution (MPI) licence bestowed upon Coinbase by the Monetary Authority of Singapore facilitates the exchange in providing digital payment token services to both individual and institutional clients in Singapore. This comes as no surprise as Singapore has steadily become an Asian hub for cryptocurrency operations, attracting various digital asset companies.
The awarding of this license comes a year after Coinbase received initial approval from the MAS. Notably, out of the many that apply, only a select few crypto firms are granted this license by the MAS. The selection criterion is stringent, primarily focusing on the robustness of the anti-money laundering controls of the applying firm.
Singapore’s Embrace of the Crypto Wave
Singapore’s increasing prominence in the crypto industry is highlighted by data which indicates that 32% of Singaporeans either currently own or have owned cryptocurrencies in the past. The city-state is also home to over 700 Web3 companies, indicating its strategic importance in the growth of the cryptocurrency and Web3 sectors.
However, the industry faced several setbacks in 2022, including the collapse of major crypto firms. Such incidents led to cautionary measures, with the MAS emphasizing regulations to protect retail investors from potential pitfalls in the crypto sphere.
Coinbase’s Commitment to Singapore
From the very beginning, Coinbase identified Singapore as a critical market for its operations. Their assessment was influenced by Singapore’s forward-looking economic strategies and its regulatory approach, which aligns with Coinbase’s global objectives.
To cater to the unique demands of the Singaporean market, Coinbase has released specific products tailored for the region. Recent initiatives include introducing easy funding options such as PayNow and FAST bank transfers. Additionally, they integrated SingPass, Singapore’s digital identity, to ensure a smoother onboarding process for users.
Coinbase’s commitment to Singapore goes beyond merely offering products. Their engagement with the broader Web3 ecosystem includes hiring and training initiatives, close partnerships with industry associations, and investments specific to the region via Coinbase Ventures.
Coinbase’s newly-acquired license from the MAS not only validates its operations but also underscores its commitment to the crypto community in Singapore. With the license in hand, the exchange is poised to further contribute to the growing crypto and Web3 ecosystems in the region.