Monetary Authority of Singapore places Binance on alert list
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (AMS), the country’s banking regulator and central bank, has placed Binance on an investor alert list. This Thursday, September 2, 2021, the financial regulator reminded that Binance.com has no license to operate in Singapore.
“The investor alert list provides a list of unregulated entities that, based on information received by the AMS, may have been misperceived as licensed or regulated by the AMS,” the Monetary Authority of Singapore said on its website.
The warning relates only to Binance.com. Binance’s Singapore platform, Binance.sg, is apparently not affected by the warning. When contacted by The Block, a Binance spokesperson reminded us that Binance.com and Binance.sg are separate exchanges:
“Binance.sg operates in Singapore with its own local management team. Binance Singapore is backed by Vertex Venture Holdings and is focused solely on growing the cryptocurrency ecosystem in Singapore and serving Singapore users,” the spokesperson details.
To recall, Binance operates in Singapore through Binance Asia Services Pte. Ltd, a subsidiary headquartered within the city-state. The branch is headed by Richard Teng, the former head of regulation at the Singapore Exchange. This entity has not yet obtained a license from the central bank.
However, it has filed an application with the regulator. While waiting for the AMS to decide on its license application, Binance’s Singapore branch is free to provide its services under the Payment Services Act.
“Binance Singapore has applied for a licence from the Monetary Authority of Singapore. We are currently operating under the exemption granted by the MSA and are fully committed to working closely with the MSA to comply with all the standards required for licence approval,” the spokesperson explained.
On the same subject – Binance US CEO resigns
Binance still in regulators’ sights
The Monetary Authority of Singapore is not the first regulator to put pressure on Binance. In recent months, the platform has been the target of a wave of warnings and restrictions around the world.
For example, Malaysia’s financial regulator ordered Binance to shut down its operations. A few weeks later, the Dutch central bank considered that the exchange was not authorised to operate in its territory. Similar warnings were issued in the UK, Italy, the Cayman Islands and Japan.
In response to these warnings, Binance was forced to suspend part of its services in certain countries. The platform suspended futures contracts in Brazil and its derivatives offering in Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Hong Kong.
Binance has also announced several measures to appease the authorities. First, the platform limited withdrawals to 0.06 BTC per day for basic accounts. Finally, Binance has required all its users to provide identification and a photo of their face.
To go further – Binance’s American branch is considering an IPO
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About the author: Florian Bayard