Singapore is predicted to become one of top destinations for Blockchain companies to launch an Initial Coin Offering (ICO). A number of factors such as tax-friendly regulations, light-touch rules, and state funding allowed the city-state to be a hub for startups and a place where a number of successful ICOs were held in the past.
The local government backed by its central bank, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), has introduced some initiatives aimed to support the fintech industry. Thus they allocated over $200 million for the development of fintech projects and applications. The state also partners with Japan to form a cooperation framework that will improve fintech links between two countries.
“Technology and innovation remain key enablers of financial sector growth in Singapore and Japan,” said Sopnendu Mohanty, Chief FinTech Officer at MAS. “The setting up of the framework is a great opportunity for the FinTech ecosystems in Singapore and Japan, and enhances the already strong financial and economic cooperation between the two countries.”
Similar partnership was announced by Singapore and Denmark. The MAS and the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority (Danish FSA) Under want to eliminate barriers to entry in a new jurisdiction and will share information about financial innovations in Singapore and Denmark.
The New York-based financial innovation company R3 has partnered with the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to open the blockchain lab in Singapore that will involve the country’s stock exchange and eight local and foreign banks
Which is more, the MAS has also issued a tokenized version of the state dollar under the so-called “Project Ubin” to demonstrate that Singapore can be a very warm place for crypto-assets. The token is available on an Ethereum-based Blockchain and Project Ubin is believed to create an alternative to the country’s interbank payments network via tokenization and Blockchain technology. The central bank also wants to maintain the reputation of the state as a financial hub protected from money laundering.
Part of the MAS statement read: “The function of digital tokens has evolved beyond just being a virtual currency. For example, digital tokens may represent ownership or a security interest over an issuer’s assets or property.”
Still, the move doesn’t mean that Singapore is closed for ICO boost, it’s intended to protect and clearify the process rather than hinder it. Regulation activities will not only protect investors but will also engage more people in participating in initial coin offerings.
In addition to the mentioned above, Singaporean port operator PSA and Pacific International Lines plan to team up with IBM to explore blockchain technology to improve transparency and security of supply chain networks and trade finance.
According to Tan Chong Meng, group CEO of PSA, blockchain holds great potential and can transform a variety of sectors, such as pharmaceutical, food and trade finance.
“Across the global movement of goods and cargo, many activities continue to operate in silos. Blockchain has the potential to reduce inefficiencies and gaps within the supply chain, promote more cost-efficient transactions and facilitate the continued growth in world trade,” he said. “PSA looks forward to working alongside its partners in supporting this initiative and we will contribute our expertise and knowledge in managing ports and advancing supply chains.”
Predictions of Singapore becoming one of the most desirable destinations for blockchain companies enhanced following China had imposed ban on all ICOs which declares them illegal, and obliges any individuals or organizations that had completed ICO fundraising to return the funds.