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Central Bank of Singapore plans to regulate payments in bitcoin

According to the minister for the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), the central banking authority of the country, the institution is working to create a regulatory framework for bitcoin payments.

06.Oct.17 6:37 AM
By Daria Zaytseva


Central Bank of Singapore plans to regulate payments in bitcoin

Answering a question on this issue from an MP, Tharman Shanmugaratnam, who is also deputy prime minister of Singapore, confirmed that, although the MAS had been monitoring cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and ether, it had no intention of regulating them. However, some peripheral actions will require a legal basis, he said.

MAS, he continued, is now working to create a new regulatory framework for cryptocurrency payment services to ensure that they are not abused for money laundering and terrorist financing. In the statement, Shanmugaratnam explained that, although MAS had not yet developed a target regulatory framework for ICOs, it would do so if it deemed it necessary.

The minister also said that although cryptocurrency trading is widely popular in the U.S., Japan and Hong Kong, the volume of trade is relatively low in Singapore. In addition, only about 20 Singaporean retailers are taking bitcoin, according to the central banking authority.

In August, MAS announced that tokens could be classified as securities. Further, the financial regulator has issued statements warning investors about potential fraudulent ICO schemes.

Last month, bank accounts were closed on the bank accounts of several bitcoin businesses, based in Singapore, without any explanation. At the time, MAS stated that, since the closure is a commercial decision taken by banks, it would not interfere.

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