Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Singapore Parliament Passes Bill to License Virtual Asset Providers

The Financial Services and Markets Bill which demands that all firms that are involved in the provision of virtual asset services be licensed has finally been enacted by the Singapore parliament.

Under this new Bill, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) is expected to bring some legal boundaries to the activities of virtual asset service providers created within Singapore which however does not offer its products in the country.

As described by this law, virtual assets in Singapore would encompass Digital tokens which could be used for payment, cryptocurrencies, and capital market products that have digital markers.

Since all the virtual asset providers that provide their services within Singapore are already regulated, what this new law would do is to further ensure that the rest of the companies that are domiciled in Singapore are prevented from getting engaged in money laundering and terrorism financing.

According to Alvin Tan, a board member of MAS, these companies that extend their services outside of Singapore have the capability of creating huge risks for the reputation of Singapore since they have been unregulated for anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT).

Singapore is one country that is leading crypto adoption and usage even at a time when some other countries are proposing outright bans on blockchain technology and its attendant innovations.

With this new law in effect, the Monetary Authority of Singapore now has the authority to put a stop to the activities of individuals, bodies, and agencies who go against laid down regulations that are meant to make the industry function at its best.

Also, the MAS can now go as far as wielding its regulatory sword at Financial institutions that are prone to a cyber security breach.

The Call For Cryptocurrency Regulation Soars

With the realization that cryptocurrency and blockchain technology would be here for a much longer time than imagined, countries that once placed a ban on cryptocurrency are now making a detour.

Vietnam is one of such countries which had earlier slammed the doors on cryptocurrency, but at the moment has chosen to tow the path of setting up legal frameworks and regulations that would ensure safety in crypto usage within the country.

Like Singapore, other nations such as the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and India have also woken up to the benefits that virtual assets can bring to national development and so are looking toward the path of regulations against an outright ban.

Victoria Nye
A Blockchain columnist who is enthusiastic about developing a network interface between the real world and the cryptosphere.

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