Singapore issues first “in-principle” regulatory license to a crypto exchange


The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has given an “in-principle approval” letter to the Australian crypto exchange, Independent Reserve. The approval comes as the exchange set out to get a Major Payment Institution Licence in Singapore under the Payment Services Act (PSA) to operate as a regulated provider for Digital Payment Token (DPT) Services. This in turn provides Independent Reserve regulatory approval to serve as the country’s official virtual asset service provider (VASP).

“To be one of the first cryptocurrency exchanges to be notified by MAS of our in-principle licensing approval is a reflection of the robustness of the policies, procedures, and risk management systems that we have put in place to guide our day-to-day operations.”, said Adrian Przelozny, CEO of Independent Reserve.

Independent Reserve in favor of Singapore’s Strict crypto regulations

Independent Reserve highlights its achievement of being the first exchange to get an in-principle approval license in a nation that has laid the strict regulatory framework for the crypto industry. The exchange argues that this approval adds a security firewall for its consumers as well as the exchange itself.

“It provides certainty for us as industry participants and security for our customers, knowing that their chosen platform has passed the scrutiny of a world-class regulator. The granting of Digital Payment Token licenses by MAS will continue to put Singapore in pole position as the leading financial hub in Asia.”, Przelozny added.

Singapore’s watchdog, the Financial Action Task Force along with MAS has applied hard and fast rules to crypto exchanges seeking to pass the in-principle regulatory tests. However, several multi-billion-dollar exchanges such as Binance and Gemini are still waiting. To ensure anti-money laundering (AML) policies in the crypto sphere, Singapore’s authority has put the exchanges through tedious tests. The exchanges are expected to form customer protection mechanisms under government surveillance, follow tight transaction screening processes, provide sturdy IT facilities, and compliance structures.

“We were impressed by the thoroughness of the licensing process and the level of detail required to ensure our systems and processes are robust and up to strict regulatory standards,” said Raks Sondhi, Managing Director of Independent Reserve in Singapore.


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