OKX gets in-principle approval for payment institution license in Singapore

The Major Payment Institution license will allow OKX to facilitate multiple payment services and exceed the transaction volume limitations set by Singapore’s financial regulator.

Crypto exchange OKX has acquired in-principle approval from Singapore’s financial watchdog for a Major Payment Institution (MPI) license through its local subsidiary, OKX SG.

In an announcement sent to Cointelegraph, OKX said it had already received the in-principle approval for the license. The MPI license is issued by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), the country’s principal financial regulator. After receiving the full license from MAS, OKX will be allowed to provide digital payment token services and cross-border transfers in the country.

OKX president Hong Fang said that Singapore was always a priority for the exchange in terms of its global strategy. The executive explained that Singapore attracts entrepreneurs venturing into new markets. “It’s a market of early adopters who are well-versed in technology.” Fang also described the country’s regulatory framework as “clear and thoughtful,” allowing businesses to “build better for the long-term.”

Fang also explained that with the new milestone, the company would focus on its spot product in Singapore. In the future, the executive said that OKX will work on bringing local banking connections to its customers and expand its offerings.

MPI-licensed companies are allowed to facilitate multiple payment services exceeding the volume limitations set for payment firms. This means that OKX could exceed the 3 million Singapore dollars (about $2.2 million) limit for any payment service and the monthly limit of 6 million SG$ ($4.4 million) for two or more payment services.

The in-principle license approval comes after OKX secured a conditional license from Dubai’s crypto regulator. On Jan. 16, Dubai’s Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority awarded OKX a license allowing the company to offer regulated services for virtual asset service providers in the region.

Apart from OKX, crypto custody business BitGo also received an in-principle approval from MAS. On Jan. 10, BitGo announced that it has also received the initial nod, subject to completing further requirements set by the regulator.

Other crypto organizations, including Crypto.com, Coinbase and Ripple, have obtained complete payment institution licenses in Singapore. In June 2023, Crypto.com secured its MPI license after completing the requirements set by the regulator. Coinbase acquired the license on Oct. 2, 2023, while Ripple received its formal approval on Oct. 4, 2023.

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