As far as financial innovation in Asia is concerned, Singapore has been a pioneer for many years now and now, the powers that be in the country are looking to usher in an era of virtual banking and needless to say, it promises to be a ripe opportunity for many companies to get into banking in a big way. It has now emerged that the continent’s most valuable startup Grab is considering entry into the banking sector in Singapore, as a when the regulatory authorities award the virtual banking licenses in the country.
It seems Grab is pretty serious about venturing into the banking space and has also hired the services of a consultancy firm to ensure that they navigate the days leading up to licensing properly. For some months, the regulatory authorities in Singapore have been mulling the launch of a virtual banking sector that will consist of banks that provide the basic services through online or mobile platforms, and it seems that it could happen soon. When a leading agency questions the country’s regulatory authority, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), the institution responded by stating that the scope of virtual banking is still being studied.
Virtual banking is an idea that is going to come sooner or later, and currently, the MAS in Singapore is weighing up options regarding the regulatory framework that will govern these banks. It believes that the city-state will come up with a decision regarding the whole thing within a few months. When it comes to something like virtual banking, it would need considerable technical skill to run and expand something like a virtual bank. In this regard, tech companies like Grab have a significant advantage over traditional banks, and that is perhaps the reason why many analysts believe that many companies want to use their technical superiority to dominate the banking system eventually. Hong Kong has already okayed the creation of virtual banks, and it is unlikely that Singapore is going to be left behind its financial hub rival in the continent.