MAS Gives Initial Approval for Upbit to Operate in Singapore

MAS Gives Initial Approval for Upbit to Operate in Singapore

UTC by Bhushan Akolkar · 2 min read
MAS Gives Initial Approval for Upbit to Operate in Singapore
Photo: Depositphotos

With the license, Upbit will now be able to offer digital payment token services to institutional investors. However, it still awaits a full MPI license from the MAS.

Upbit, South Korea’s largest exchange in terms of volume, has achieved in-principle approval for a Major Payment Institution (MPI) license in Singapore through its Singapore entity.

On October 16, Upbit Singapore announced that the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) granted the in-principle license. This will enable them the provision of offering digital payment token services to institutional investors while the full license is pending.

CEO and founder of Upbit Singapore, Alex Kim, spoke on the recent development. He emphasized that the recent approval represents a strategic milestone for strengthening its local presence. Kim said:

“Since 2018, we have been building solid foundations for a robust digital asset business in Singapore, the leading financial hub in Asia. This approval from MAS is a strategic milestone for us to deepen our presence in Singapore, which is at the forefront of digital asset innovation. Singapore, as our global powerhouse, unlocks new capabilities for retail, institutional, and infrastructure focused businesses.”

Singapore Opens Gates for Upbit and Others

Upon receiving the MPI license from MAS, Upbit Singapore will become part of the regulated digital asset exchange network within Upbit APAC. Upbit APAC, a significant global digital asset conglomerate, encompasses regulated digital asset exchanges in Indonesia and Thailand, as well as VerifyVASP, a top Travel Rule solution provider.

Upbit APAC is poised to expedite its growth in global, institutional, and infrastructure-oriented sectors, providing support to dedicated developers. Azman Hamid, Chief Compliance Officer of Upbit Singapore said:

“We are incredibly proud to receive the IPA from MAS, a globally renowned financial regulator. This approval reflects our unwavering commitment to building trusted digital asset businesses in Singapore. Through engaging collaboration with the regulator, businesses and communities, we will contribute to further establish Singapore as the leading hub for the next generation of financial businesses”.

In the month of October, MAS granted license approvals to the Singaporean branches of Coinbase, Ripple, and Sygnum Bank. This further expanded the count of MAS-licensed digital payment token service providers to 15. On October 2, Coinbase secured full approval for its MPI license, while GSR, a crypto trading firm, obtained in-principle approval for its MPI on the same day. The following day, Swiss crypto bank subsidiary Sygnum Singapore also secured its full MPI license, and Ripple received full MPI approval on October 4.

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