MAS grants in-principle approval to crypto exchange Independent Reserve as DPT provider

August 3, 2021

AUSTRALIAN crypto exchange Independent Reserve said on Tuesday that it has obtained “in-principle approval” from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to operate as a regulated provider of digital payment token (DPT) services, according to Business Times.

The eight-year-old Independent Reserve said it is one of the first virtual asset service providers to obtain an in-principle approval letter for the licence.

Under the Payment Services Act (PSA) which came into effect in January 2020, all providers of DPT services operating in Singapore, including crypto exchanges, must be registered and licensed. The Act gives the MAS supervisory authority over payment firms to ensure, among other things, that they are compliant with anti-money laundering (AML) and counter financing of terrorism (CFT) requirements.

However, no crypto licence has been granted to date, and DPT service providers have been operating with an exemption from holding a licence under the PSA. The exemption is in force until applications are approved or rejected by MAS, or withdrawn by the applicant.

In the interest of consumer safety, the MAS screened applicants for customer protection mechanisms, transaction screening, robustness of IT services, compliance structures and AML/CFT processes. To obtain the licence, virtual asset service providers had to put controls in place to ensure proper due diligence, suitable solicitation, and adequate risk disclosure, Independent Reserve said.

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