Coinbase, the United States-based cryptocurrency exchange, is set to expand its operations in Singapore after gaining significant regulatory approval from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). On October 1st, Coinbase proudly announced the acquisition of a Major Payment Institution (MPI) license, marking a year since the initial in-principle approval in Singapore. This newfound license empowers Coinbase to broaden its digital payment token services to both individuals and institutions within Singapore.
MAS stipulates that MPI-licensed entities possess authorization to offer payment services without being bound by the 3 million Singapore dollar ($2.2 million) transaction limit for any payment service. Furthermore, these approved firms are exempt from the monthly transaction cap of 6 million SG$ ($4.4 million) for two or more payment services, with the exception of e-money account issuance and money-changing services.
For Coinbase, this newly secured license signifies not only an affirmation of its operational competence but also a commitment to the burgeoning crypto and Web3 community in Singapore, as expressed in the company’s official statement. Coinbase has been actively tailoring its products and services to the Singaporean market, with the launch of PayNow and FAST bank transfers in March 2023. Additionally, the integration of Singapore’s digital identity service, SingPass, has streamlined the onboarding process. Collaborations with prominent local blockchain firms, including Nansen.ai, Blockdaemon, and Infura, have enabled the expansion of products such as Base blockchain and wallet-as-a-service.
Highlighting the strategic importance of Singapore in Coinbase’s global growth plans, the exchange emphasized the country’s role as a significant market with over 30% of Singaporeans having current or past involvement in cryptocurrency ownership. Coinbase noted, “Singapore has naturally become a significant location for this industry. Moreover, Singapore is home to over 700 Web3 companies, making it a pivotal market for the growth of the crypto and Web3 economy.”
At the time of reporting, Coinbase had not responded to Cointelegraph’s request for further comment. It’s worth noting that Coinbase joins a growing list of global cryptocurrency firms that have recently secured Singapore’s MPI license, further solidifying the country’s position as a crypto-friendly hub. Other notable recipients of this license include Blockchain.com and Circle, issuers of the USD Coin (USDC) stablecoin, and the crypto exchange Crypto.com.