SINGAPORE (July 1): The Bank for International Settlements (BIS), the Basel, Switzerland-based institution, which watches over global financial stability, has selected Singapore as one of the locations for an innovation hub centre, alongside Basel and Hong Kong.

In collaboration with other central banks, the Singapore Hub Centre aims to develop the technology architecture for an efficient and secure digital global financial system and facilitate experiments in the application of technology to enhance financial regulation.

In an announcement on Sunday, BIS says operations in the Singapore Hub Centre will start as soon as institutional arrangements for the establishment have been finalised.

Ravi Menon, Managing Director, Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), says, “A wave of technological innovations is sweeping across financial services. To fully harness the benefits of these innovations while ensuring the resilience of the financial sector, central banks must also innovate – to modernise the technology infrastructure and regulatory arrangements that underpin digital finance and the digital economy.”

“The BIS Innovation Hub initiative provides a compelling platform for central banks to collaborate in this effort, so as to maximise the benefits of cross-border digital connectivity and commerce. MAS looks forward to working closely with the BIS and the global central banking community to advance this visionary and important agenda,” he adds.

The announcement comes as MAS, Singapore's de facto central bank, said on Friday it would offer up to five digital bank licences to suitable applicants, a move that could shake up two decades of market dominance by local banks.

See: Singapore to offer up to five digital bank licences