Singapore’s monetary authority launches Sandbox Express for faster product testing
Sandbox Express began last year during the issuance of MAS’s consultation at Singapore Fintech Festival.
Usually, fintech companies need to customise their sandboxes under the existing FinTech Regulatory Sandbox in order to launch a product or service. With Sandbox Express’s pre-defined system, all eligible applicants can start market testing immediately because it shortens the approval process for entry into the sandbox.
It does so by relying on standard disclosures and predetermined rules, making it only suitable for activities where “the risks are low and well-understood by the market, and can be reasonably managed within pre-defined parameters”.
The conditions of approval include clear and proper disclosure to the customer as well as submitting regular progress reports to MAS.
The FinTech Regulatory Sandbox was in operation since 2016 and has stated that it remains open for applicants with more complex business models as well as the ones where MAS requires more time to understand the risks of the activities.
In the beginning, Sandbox Express will be available specifically for insurance brokers, recognised market operators, and remittance businesses with its pre-defined boundaries, regulatory reliefs, and expectations respectively.
Experiments can remain in Sandbox Express for up to nine months. It is deemed as the ideal time to provide firms more time to overcome business and technical challenges during experimentation and to prepare for exiting the sandbox and deploying the innovation on a larger scale.
It is also seen as enough time for MAS to address potential regulatory challenges.
According to Sopnendu Mohanty, Chief FinTech Officer, MAS, it all comes down to encouraging more innovation.
“For innovation to take root, it is important for ideas to be tested quickly and in a safe environment. This introduction of Sandbox Express builds on the experience we have gained from running the FinTech Regulatory Sandbox and reflects our commitment to encouraging more experimentation and greater adoption of innovative technologies in the financial sector,” Mohanty said.
MAS said it will monitor the utilisation of Sandbox Express to ensure that it meets the evolving needs and interests of the financial industry. Besides that, it will also explore opportunities to expand the range of financial products and services that can be offered through Sandbox Express.