Singapore deputy PM tells retail investors ‘steer clear of cryptos’

‘Retail investors especially should steer clear of cryptocurrencies. We cannot emphasise this enough’

The deputy prime minister of Singapore, Heng Swee Keat, has warned retail investors against investing in cryptocurrency. 

Keat said: “Retail investors especially should steer clear of cryptocurrencies. We cannot emphasise this enough.”

He lamented the losses suffered by investors “in the recent meltdown of TerraUSD and Luna, which triggered knock-on effects on Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

Speaking at the Asia Tech x Singapore Summit, Keat nonetheless admitted that “digital technology is changing the world.”

He said: “The crypto asset space is constantly evolving. We recognise this is a highly risky area, but it also has the potential to transform the future of finance.”

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Keat, a member of Singapore’s ruling People’s Action Party (PAP) and a former finance minister, said: “We remain keen to work with blockchain and digital asset players to encourage innovation, and build up trust in the sector.” 

Eleven licence approvals

Since 2020, the Monetary Authority of Singapore has only approved licences to 11 digital payment token service providers. So far, more than 100 companies have failed in their efforts to seek regulatory approval in the Asian financial hub. 

The regulator’s managing director, Ravi Menon, defending its strict approach, said in April: "The licensing process is stringent. And it needs to be because we want to be a responsible global crypto hub with innovative players, but also with strong risk management capabilities.”

April also saw Singapore pass the Financial Services Markets Bill 2022, which ensured tighter scrutiny of digital assets.

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