Can Binance Finally Enter the Singapore Market?

Sahana Kiran
Source – Unsplash

Singapore has been quite clear about its stance on letting digital asset firms operate in its region. Despite being the world’s largest exchange, Binance has struggled to receive regulatory approval from Singaporean regulators. Now, the exchange is attempting another strategy to re-enter the nation.

According to a recent report, Binance’s custody firm, Ceffu, is applying for a Capital Markets Service license from the Monetary Authority of Singapore [MAS]. The exchange intends to deliver custodial services across the region. The executives from Ceffu noted that it would apply for a license “in due course.”

Binance veered into Singapore with Ceffu back in November 2022. It should be noted that the CZ-led custody service changed its name to Ceffu in February 2023. The firm also highlighted that the rebranding was required after it operated for an entire year. Its latest name was derived from Binance’s insurance policy, SAFU [Secure Asset Fund for Users].

Elaborating on Ceffu’s potential regulatory approval in Singapore, Athena Yu, Ceffu’s vice president further said,

“Given the city’s reputation in innovation, good corporate governance, and a strong regulatory framework, it’s no surprise that institutional investors are attracted to set up shop here.”

Will MAS let Binance in?

Binance decided to exit the Singapore market in December 2021. In addition, the exchange withdrew its application for a Digital Payments Token license. The firm initially attributed this decision to its investment in an already regulated exchange that was operating in the region. During the whole FTX debacle, MAS even spoke about the CZ-led firm. MAS further said,

“While both Binance and FTX are not licensed here, there is a clear difference between the two: Binance was actively soliciting users in Singapore while FTX was not.”

The fall of several projects further stood as a hurdle to Binance’s entry into Singapore. But Ceffu does not deal with retail clients as a custodian but solely with institutional investors and high-net-worth individuals. Therefore, the chances of Ceffu’s garnering regulatory approval were boosted.