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Singapore to have digital banks by next year

Singapore in all probability will have new digital banks by mid-2020. The country’s banking regulator, the Monetary Authority of Singapore is expected to award licenses to such banks by early next year and the entities soon. MAS said it expects to complete the procedure of accepting applications by the year-end and assessment with a brief period of time. The central bank had said in June it plans to issue as many as 5 new digital bank licenses to non-banks to strengthen competition in financial services. Among the firms to have reportedly expressed interest are Grab, Razer and Malayan Banking. Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp is in talks with companies including Singapore Telecommunications about applying. The MAS has set 2 categories for the new licenses. The first allows up to 2 digital full banks for non-bank firms based in Singapore and controlled by Singaporeans. They will be allowed to provide a range of financial services and take deposits from retail customers. The second category allows 3 digital wholesale banks limited to corporate clients only, which are open to both local and foreign firms.

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