Singapore shuts down Bitcoin ATMs after new guidelines from central bank

January 20, 2022

Bitcoin ATM operators in Singapore halt their services as they await further clarification from the central bank following new guidelines issued on Monday.

Two cryptocurrency ATM operators have acted quickly to the Monetary Authority of Singapore’s (MAS) new guidelines issued on Monday, according to FXEmpire. Under the new guidelines, the central bank of Singapore said that crypto trading should not be advertised to the public and specifically mentioned the ATMs in Singapore.

One Singapore-based regulatory lawyer told Blockchain Asset Review that the new guidelines issued by the MAS are not good and it is “too restrictive.”

Here is all you need to know:

  • Daenerys & Co. and Deodi Pte crypto ATM operators in the city-state have shut down quoting the MAS guidelines as an “unexpected surprise.”
  • “To comply with the sudden announcement, we have ceased to offer buy or sell services via our ATMs while seeking further clarification from the MAS,” a representative from Daenerys told FXEmpire.
  • Another operator, Deodi Pte has halted services from its public Bitcoin machine on Tuesday, pursuant to MAS notice.
    Daenerys has five crypto ATMs, that accept fiat currency to lend cryptos, mostly Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple among others.
  • Alongside digital currencies’ increasing prominence in Singapore, the untraceable nature making it an attractive medium for illegal activities has made the regulator reiterate the risks it poses.
  • However, MAS did not impose any penalties from ATM operators for non-compliance.
  • Singapore’s financial regulator has clearly told crypto companies to refrain from advertising or promoting their digital currency services but has not banned its usage.
  • Users can still go and buy cryptos – “but it will be more deliberate and less on impulse.”
  • The cautious approach on every aspect is due to the fear of cryptocurrencies being abused for money laundering, terrorism financing, due to the speed and cross-border nature of the transactions
  • According to a recent poll by fintech comparison website Finder.com, nearly 16 percent of Singaporean adults currently own cryptocurrency.
  • Bitcoin is the most popular coin owned by citizens, followed by Ethereum and Cardano.

Image: The Straits Time

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