In a significant development, Ripple, a prominent blockchain-based payments company, has obtained preliminary regulatory approval from Singapore’s esteemed financial regulator to offer digital asset payments and token products within the city-state.
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) granted its formal approval to Ripple, as confirmed in a statement released on June 22. This pivotal endorsement will enable Ripple Markets Asia Pacific, a subsidiary of Ripple, to expand the scope of its On-Demand Liquidity (ODL) system. The ODL empowers Ripple’s clientele to seamlessly transfer XRP across borders without the involvement of traditional financial intermediaries such as banks.
We’re honored to obtain In-Principle Approval of a Major Payments Institution License from the @MAS_sg – allowing us to offer regulated digital asset products and services, and scale customer use of #ODL. 🇸🇬— Ripple (@Ripple) June 22, 2023
Learn more: https://t.co/8Ylc3lZSeg
Ripple’s application for an institutional payment license adhered to Singapore’s Payment Service Act, paving the way for this substantial breakthrough. Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse expressed his admiration for the pragmatic and innovation-driven approach of Singapore’s regulatory body, emphasizing that the country will serve as a prominent gateway for Ripple’s operations across the Asia Pacific region.
Stu Alderoty, Chief Legal Officer at Ripple, acknowledged Singapore’s pioneering role in shaping the landscape for other regulators seeking to develop a clear framework and classification for blockchain and cryptocurrency-related activities. He emphasized the value of the MAS’s in-principle regulatory approval, as it will enable Ripple to provide enhanced support to forward-thinking customers interested in harnessing the potential of blockchain and crypto technologies to foster a more inclusive and borderless financial ecosystem.
1/ @MAS_sg has built a workable framework that truly unites consumer protection, market integrity and innovation. They’ve also outlined a clear taxonomy to classify and regulate digital assets – making it possible for companies like Ripple to build and offer compliant products. https://t.co/KLYzWRrST0— Stuart Alderoty (@s_alderoty) June 22, 2023
In 2022, Ripple witnessed a substantial growth trajectory in its Asia Pacific headquarters, doubling its workforce as the Singapore base served as the primary hub for ODL transactions in the region.
On June 21, the MAS introduced its Purpose Bound Money white paper, which proposes comprehensive standards for fintech firms offering digital money services in Singapore. Ripple’s compliance journey in Singapore encountered relatively few legal obstacles compared to other jurisdictions.
However, Ripple’s legal team has been entangled in a protracted legal battle with the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission since December 2020. The SEC filed a lawsuit accusing Ripple of unlawfully offering XRP, the token that powers the XRP Ledger, as an unregistered security. A ruling on this high-profile case is expected in the coming months, as stated by Garlinghouse.
.@MAS_sg published a whitepaper proposing a common protocol to specify conditions for the use of digital money such as CBDCs, tokenised bank deposits, and stablecoins on a distributed ledger.— MAS (@MAS_sg) June 21, 2023
Moreover, Ripple recently entered into a partnership with Banco de la República, Colombia’s central bank, to conduct a pilot project for a central bank digital currency utilizing the XRP Ledger. The company has also established collaborations with central banks in Montenegro and Thailand, in addition to numerous regional banks and financial institutions worldwide.