The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) finally shortlisted 15 companies that will assist in developing retail CBDC. These firms will participate in the Global CBDC challenge and help build the in-house retail central bank digital currency.
MAS announcement indicates that the participants include four companies from the United States and six from Singapore. There’s also one firm each from Barbados, France, Switzerland, Australia, and Germany. Of all the participants, only three winners will emerge and work to build Singapore’s retail CBDC.
On June 28, there was an announcement of the cash prizes for the digital currency ideas by the Singaporean central bank. This resulted in a challenge that has more than 300 fintech firms from over 50 countries in participation.
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Some of the global finalists are Criteo (France), Bitt (Barbados), and Soramitsu (Switzerland). Also, there are ANZ Banking Group Limited (Australia) and Giesecke+Devrient advance52 GmbH (Germany).
The shortlisted United States-based firms include Consensys, cLabs Inc., IBM, and Extolabs LLC.
The local Singaporean shortlisted consortiums are IOG Singapore Pte Ltd, Citibank N.A., Standard Chartered Bank, and IDEMIA. Others are HSBC Bank Limited and HSBC Holdings Plc, and Xfers Pte Ltd
Finalists Will Be Rewarded For Developing CBDC Retail
A cash prize of 50,000 Singapore dollars (about $37,000) complements the Singaporean initiative of building its retail CBDC. An earlier announcement disclosed the MAS mentoring of the 15 finalists.
Also, the finalists can gain access to the APIX Digital Currency Sandbox that will promote quick prototyping of digital currency solutions.
The Sandbox ecosystem should contain over 100 APIs that are linked to payments and core banking.
Furthermore, it will contain Mastercard’s digital fund APIs. The finalists now have an opportunity to promote their CBDC solutions during the Singapore Fintech Festival from November 8th to November 12th, 2021.
There have been pro-crypto moves from the country’s authorities through the entire 2021. For example, the MAS recently released an ‘in-principle approval to Independent Reserve, an Australian crypto exchange. The company stands as the first crypto exchange to receive such approval in Singapore.
The approval will enable the company to run as a regulated Digital Payment Token (DPT) Service provider. Through the approval, Independent Reserve is expected to avail its users the maximum consumer protection. It will also ensure compliance with Anti-Money Laundering rules.
Also, there’s a report that Singapore hosts 170 crypto exchanges, including Germini and Binance. These companies seek approval to kick off businesses in the country.
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