Singapore’s central bank, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), has granted in-principle regulatory approval to blockchain payments firm Ripple. The approval, for a Major Payments Institution (MPI) License, allows Ripple’s Singapore arm to offer regulated digital payment token products and services in the city-state. This puts Ripple on track to further scale customer use of its crypto-enabled payments through its On-Demand Liquidity (ODL) service in Singapore and the APAC region.
Expansion in the Asia Pacific Region
Ripple’s achievement is notable, as the MAS has granted fewer than 20 in-principle approvals and licenses to date. The company’s ODL service has experienced significant growth globally in 2022, with a majority of this growth coming from its Singapore operations. As a result, Ripple has doubled its headcount in Singapore over the past year and plans to continue increasing its presence in the world’s fastest growing region.
Singapore’s Blockchain Efforts
The MAS has been working to regulate and expand the country’s blockchain industry, filling the gap in regulatory clarity that has affected crypto firms in the U.S. In November 2021, the central bank granted stablecoin issuers Circle Internet Financial and Paxos approval for MPI licenses to operate in the region, enabling them to offer stablecoin services and other digital payment token products within Singapore. To help address the issue of a global regulatory framework for digital assets, the MAS released a whitepaper calling for the creation of a common protocol that specifies the conditions for the use of various types of digital money, including central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), tokenized bank deposits, and stablecoins.
Strengthening the Digital Assets Ecosystem
Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse stated that they look forward to strengthening their partnership with MAS to propel the growth and development of the digital assets ecosystem in Singapore. Ripple’s efforts are aimed at supporting forward-looking customers looking to harness blockchain and crypto technologies to build a more inclusive and borderless financial system.