San Francisco-based blockchain payments firm Ripple has gained in-principal approval from the top financial regulator in Singapore.
The in-principal approval is for a Major Payments Institution License from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). The permission is for Ripple to offer digital asset payments and token products in the nation, the company said in a June 21 press release.
“Singapore is a leading global financial center and a prominent gateway to business in Asia Pacific,” Ripple’s CEO Brad Garlinghouse posited. “We’re incredibly proud to receive an in-principle license from the MAS, reaffirming our commitment to the region and ongoing proactive engagement with regulators globally.”
The approval places Ripple’s Singapore branch, Ripple Markets Asia Pacific, in a stronger position to further expand its customers’ use of the XRP-powered On-Demand Liquidity (ODL) service, which saw a 5X growth in the republic year-on-year.
Ripple has been operating its Asia-Pacific headquarters out of Singapore since 2017. In a separate announcement, Ripple revealed that it had managed to double the number of employees at the Singapore base, totalling 50 full-time staff.
Ripple CEO Hails Singapore As “Global Leader” On Crypto Regulation
Speaking on approval from MAS, Ripple’s chief legal officer Stuart Alderoty observed that Singapore’s “early leadership” is setting an example for other countries aiming to create a “clear taxonomy and licensing framework.”
It’s worth mentioning that Ripple is the latest company to obtain a license for digital payment token services in Singapore in June. Crypto.com and Circle received their Major Payment Institution (MPI) licenses earlier this month.
Ripple chief executive officer Brad Garlinghouse also commended the Singaporean regulator on Thursday, noting that it was “a global leader in establishing clear rules of the road to recognize the innovation and real-world utility of digital assets”.
Although Ripple’s compliance journey in Singapore has been rather easy without legal hurdles, this has not been the case back home in the U.S. The fintech firm has been enmeshed in a courtroom war with the Securities and Exchange (SEC) since late 2020 after the commission filed a suit against them for selling the XRP cryptocurrency via an unregistered securities offering. The case is expected to come to a conclusion in the coming weeks — if not days.