The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) is seeking to extend its oversight to include cryptocurrency activities outside of its jurisdiction.
- A proposal from the city-state's central bank would effectively extend the provisions set by the 2019 Payment Services Act (PSA) to include the overseas activities of locally based crypto companies or individuals.
- That means virtual asset service providers (VASPs) will be obliged to run their overseas activities to the same regulatory standards as their Singapore operations.
- Per the consultation paper, MAS argues the proposal would stop regulatory arbitrage in which multinational VASPs cherry-pick the regulation that best suits their businesses.
- This would also align Singapore closer to the anti-money laundering recommendations set last year by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an international watchdog.
- VASPs affected will be those that work overseas but have a "meaningful presence" in Singapore – that is, if their offices and directors are based in the jurisdiction.
- Further, a company representative would have to be present and answerable to the Singapore regulator at all times.
- MAS originally floated the idea of extending PSA soon after it was ratified in December 2019.
- A public consultation period is open until Aug. 20, 2020.
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