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MAS declares Xfers & SEBA Bank as finalists for Global CBDC Challenge

By Leandra Monteiro

September 03, 2021

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Monetary Authority of Singapore, MAS, XfersSEBA Bank, a FINMA licenced Swiss Bank providing a secure and easy-to-use bridge between digital and traditional assets, today announced together with Xfers, a Southeast Asia based payments leader holding a Major Payment Institution (MPI) license for e-money issuance, that they have been named among the 15 finalists for the Global Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) Challenge organised by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).

Launched by the Monetary Authority of Singapore and in partnership with the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, Asian Development Bank, United Nations Capital Development Fund, United Nations High Commission for Refugees, United Nations Development Programme, and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the Global CBDC Challenge calls for FinTech companies, financial institutions and solution providers around the world to submit innovative retail CBDC solutions to enhance payment efficiencies and promote financial inclusion.

The joint proposal submitted by Xfers and SEBA Bank was shortlisted from over 300 applications representing over 50 countries and will be presented to the public and a panel of judges at the Singapore Fintech Festival on 08 November 2021.

Aymeric Salley, Head of StraitsX said, “We are delighted to be named finalists for the CBDC challenge by the MAS. We look forward to continuing leveraging our experience as Singapore’s first stablecoin issuer, and working closely with our partner, SEBA Bank, which comes with a wealth of expertise and practical experience in developing CBDCs, having just completed a CBDC experiment with Banque de France in June this year.”

In June this year, SEBA Bank completed a successful CBDC experiment with the Banque de France, which demonstrated the capacity of distributed ledger technologies to communicate with the Eurosystem’s settlement platform TARGET2-Securities for the settlement of listed securities. This testing is an important contribution towards the development of an EU wide CBDC.

Matthew Alexander, Head of Digital Corporate Finance & Asset Tokenisation SEBA Bank, commented, “We are thrilled to have been selected by the MAS for this CBDC challenge amongst such a prestigious group of institutions. We look forward to working with our partner Xfers and contributing both our Digital Asset capabilities and recent experience working with the Banque de France CBDC to support the MAS and the Singapore financial centre. At SEBA Bank, we are constantly striving for innovation in the development of digital currencies and digital asset infrastructure. This selection, alongside our partners Xfers, by MAS as a finalist in the CBDC challenge, is a significant validation of our innovation in the development of digital currencies, and builds on our work supporting the Banque de France in CBDC testing. The shortlisting by MAS is testament to SEBA Bank’s extensive network and operations in APAC, with the recent appointment of Sam Lin as APAC CEO, and headcount growth in our Singapore and Hong Kong hubs, further solidifying our presence in the region.”

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