Singapore is often considered one of the most open economies in the world, but its relationship with the crypto industry of late has been inconsistent. The fintech policy chief believes the city-state will be “brutal and relentlessly tough” on any bad behavior.

Crackdown on Bad Behavior in Crypto

By talking to FinancialTimesSopnendu Mohanty, Chief Financial Technology Officer of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), said the focus will be on cracking down on bad behavior in the crypto industry and added that the central bank has no tolerance for these market players.

“If someone has done a bad thing, we are brutal and relentlessly tough.”

Needless to say, Terra’s collapse, a taste of the quick sell-off this month, has forced regulators to toughen their stance on the industry. Mohanty thinks the world as a whole is “lost in private currency”, which is the root of the current market turmoil.

He admitted that Singapore imposed an “extremely slow” and “extremely draconian” due diligence process for licensing crypto-related businesses. The leader also said,

“We have been called out by many cryptocurrencies for not being friendly. My answer was: friendly for what? Friend for a real economy or friend for an unreal economy? »

Singapore has witnessed the departure of several crypto companies to the Middle East this year. Many of these entities cited licensing delays and repeated warnings from authorities that they do not want retail investors to invest funds in crypto due to excessive risk.

Crypto exchanges ByBit and Binance, as well as hedge fund Three Arrows Capital, abandoned plans to operate in the country and moved to Dubai instead.

Following the exodus of major market players, the Deputy Prime Minister of Singapore, Heng Swee Keat, announced the launch of “Project Guardian”. The collaborative initiative aims to foster applications built around asset tokenization and decentralized finance (DeFi). As part of Project Guardian, MAS will partner with top banks, digital asset companies and digital infrastructure companies.

Three companies obtain a license to operate in the country

Despite the hardened stance, CryptoCom has received approval in principle from MAS to offer payment services in the country.

The latest approval will enable the digital asset exchange to offer numerous settlement solutions under the Payment Services Act, including Digital Payment Token (DPT) services to Singaporean customers. Two other crypto companies – Genesis and Sparrow – have also gained approval to provide similar services.

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