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Coinbase’s Regulatory Win: Full Operating License Secured In Singapore

Popular cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase is continuing its global expansion strategy after landing a payment institution license from the Monetary Authority of Singapore.

Coinbase Obtains Payment License In Singapore

San Francisco-based digital asset exchange Coinbase has received regulatory approval from Singapore’s central bank, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).

The company said that the license will allow it to expand its digital asset payment services to both individuals and institutions in the country.

The Major Payment Institution (MPI) license comes one year after Coinbase obtained In-Principle Approval (IPA), underscoring the company’s commitment to the Singaporean market. 

Coinbase said in its announcement that it identified Singapore as a vital market for its expansion goals after its initial initiatives in the country. The exchange cited a recent survey that found that “25% of surveyed Singaporeans view crypto as finance’s future, with 32% currently or previously owning crypto.”

“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,” the blog post added.

Coinbase has been quietly strengthening its presence in Singapore, unveiling user-centric services designed specifically for the nation and rolling out PayNow and FAST bank transfers in March 2023. Additionally, Coinbase’s venture capital arm has been teaming up with regional partners like Nansen.ai to broaden its products such as Base blockchain and wallet-as-a-service. Coinbase has also integrated Singapore’s trusted digital identity, SingPass, to streamline onboarding.

Coinbase’s Aggressive Expansion Plans

Coinbase’s latest regulatory greenlight in Singapore aligns with its broader international expansion plans amid the regulatory uncertainty back in the U.S.

Coinbase is currently embroiled in a lawsuit from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The exchange is accused of operating as an unregistered exchange, broker, and clearing agency, and selling unregistered securities through its staking service.

In this context, the Coinbase International Exchange acquired regulatory approval from Bermuda’s financial regulator to list perpetual futures to eligible non-U.S. retail customers. Just last week, Coinbase successfully registered with Spain’s central bank to offer exchange and custody services in the country.

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