Coinbase, a San Francisco-headquartered cryptocurrency exchange, has obtained a full Major Payment Institution (MPI) license from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). This marks a significant milestone for Coinbase’s expansion in Southeast Asia, and is a testament to Singapore’s progressive stance on cryptocurrency regulation.
Coinbase’s decision to enter the Singapore market is not surprising, given the country’s high retail demand for cryptocurrencies. In a recent survey, 25% of Singaporeans said they see crypto as the future of finance, and 32% either hold or have held cryptocurrencies.
Coinbase has already taken steps to tailor its products and services to the Singapore market, such as adding local funding options and integrating SingPass to streamline onboarding processes. The exchange is also offering no-fee USDC purchases with SGD.
Coinbase’s expansion in Southeast Asia comes at a time when its future in India is uncertain. The exchange recently terminated new signups and accounts of Indian users who did not meet its requirements. However, Coinbase is expanding in several other jurisdictions by obtaining local licenses. It was recently registered as a virtual asset service provider (VASP) in Spain and holds similar approval in Italy, Ireland, and the Netherlands.
Coinbase’s expansion in Southeast Asia is a positive development for the cryptocurrency industry. It shows that major crypto exchanges are committed to expanding into new markets and working with regulators to create a more compliant and secure environment for cryptocurrency investors.