Singapore tightens crypto regulations for retail customers

  • Singapore will introduce stricter rules to regulate cryptocurrency service providers in the city-state, in a bid to protect retail customers.
  • “The proposals consulted on detail business conduct and consumer access procedures to limit potential consumer harm,” the Monetary Authority of Singapore said in a statement on Thursday.
  • MAS has repeatedly warned that cryptocurrency trading involves high risks and is not suitable for the general public, as cryptocurrency prices are subject to volatility and speculation.

A woman rides her bike with the Marina Bay Sands Hotel and high-rise buildings in the background in Singapore on September 4, 2023.

Raslan Rahman | AFP | Getty Images

Singapore will implement stricter rules The city-state’s financial authority said the measure is for cryptocurrency service providers, following reactions to the proposed regulations.

“The proposals consulted on detail business conduct and consumer access procedures to limit potential consumer harm,” the Monetary Authority of Singapore said in a statement on Thursday.

The measures will include prohibiting cryptocurrency service providers in Singapore from accepting locally issued credit card payments, offering incentives to trade in cryptocurrencies and providing financing, margin transactions or leverage to retail clients. MAS said the final measures will take effect in stages starting in mid-2024.

The regulator will also issue rules related to business conduct, such as requiring crypto service providers to publish policies, procedures and standards governing the listing of digital payment tokens and establishing effective procedures for handling customer complaints and resolving disputes.

“DPT providers are committed to protecting the interests of consumers who interact with their platforms and use their services,” said Ho Hern Chen, Deputy Managing Director of Financial Supervision at MAS.

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“Although these trading conduct and consumer access measures can help achieve this goal, they cannot insulate customers from losses associated with the speculative and high-risk nature of cryptocurrency trading,” Ho said.

“We urge consumers to remain vigilant and exercise extreme caution when transacting with digital payment token services, and not to transact with unregulated entities, including those based overseas.”

MAS has repeatedly warned that cryptocurrency trading involves high risks and is not suitable for the general public, as cryptocurrency prices are subject to volatility and speculation.

Payment Services Act of Singapore – A framework for regulating payment services and providing cryptocurrency services to the public – first came into effect in January 2020.

Since then, Singapore has strengthened oversight of cryptocurrency companies. And in July I ordered Companies to keep clients’ assets under legal trust Before the end of the year. Mas too Restricts companies from facilitating lending Or staking the assets of their individual clients.

In January 2022, Singapore Prevent crypto providers from promoting Their services in public places or through third parties such as social media influencers. Crypto providers can only market or advertise on their company websites, mobile apps, or official social media accounts.

At the Singapore FinTech Festival 2023 last week, Ravi Menon, managing director of MAS, said cryptocurrencies had “failed the digital money test.”

“They have performed poorly as a medium of exchange or store of value. Prices are subject to sharp speculative fluctuations. Many investors in these cryptocurrencies have suffered significant losses,” Menon said.

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