XREX obtains in-principle approval for Major Payment Institution license in Singapore

Quick Take

  • The Asia-based crypto exchange said it hopes to acquire the full license within six months.

XREX, an Asia-based crypto exchange specializing in cross-border payments, obtained in-principle approval in Singapore for a Major Payment Institution (MPI) license.

XREX said in a statement shared with The Block that the Monetary Authority of Singapore has given the company initial approval for a license that would eventually allow it to offer digital payment token products and services in the city-state.

The license — once obtained in full — will allow the company to expand BitCheck, a payment tool that supports fiat, stablecoins and other cryptocurrencies.

"Our engagements with the MAS have shown us time and again why they are internationally revered as a leading central bank and financial regulator," Christopher Chye, chief executive officer of XREX Singapore, told The Block in a written statement. "They are thorough but never overbearing, strict but never high-handed, and risk-averse but never without business sensibilities." 

Chye added, "We look forward to partnering with the MAS to acquire the full license within six months."

APAC expansion


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Wayne Huang, co-founder and Group CEO of XREX, said that XREX Singapore will become the primary provider of products in APAC, while XREX Taiwan will still play an essential role in the company’s product design, engineering, research and threat analysis functions.

“Serving as the headquarters for the Asia Pacific region, XREX Singapore will also turn its eye to its neighboring emerging markets, where access to USD liquidity may not always be easily within reach,” Chye added.

Singapore is considered a relatively crypto-friendly jurisdiction with many global companies in the crypto and web3 space setting up their bases in the country. However, the city-state has over the past year endured several crises involving crypto players, including the failures of Three Arrows Capital, Vauld and Hodlnaut.

MAS appears to remain committed to playing ball with crypto firms. Last month, the regulator handed Coinbase a full MPI license after granting in-principal approval late last year. In June, Circle also obtained an MPI license.

© 2023 The Block. All Rights Reserved. This article is provided for informational purposes only. It is not offered or intended to be used as legal, tax, investment, financial, or other advice.

About Author

Timmy Shen is an Asia reporter for The Block. Previously, he wrote about crypto and Web3 for Forkast.News from Taiwan after spending more than three years in Beijing covering finance and current affairs at Caixin Global and Chinese tech at TechNode. His China-related reporting has also appeared in The Guardian. When he's not chasing headlines, you'll find him savoring hot pot and shabu shabu in a Taipei local haunt. Timmy holds an MS degree from Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. Send tips to [email protected] or get in touch on X/Telegram @timmyhmshen.


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