The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the State Government of Maharashtra (GoM) in India have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to strengthen cooperation in promoting FinTech innovation in the two markets. The MoU was signed at a ceremony at the Magnetic Maharashtra event in India.

The agreement provides opportunities for FinTech start-ups in Singapore to set-up and build business relationships with FinTech companies at the Mumbai FinTech hub. (According to media reports, GoM plans to develop the capital city of the state and the financial hub of the country, Mumbai, as a global FinTech hub as part of the State Fintech Policy 2018.)

As part of the MOU, the Government of Maharashtra and MAS will co-develop educational programmes on FinTech and explore potential joint innovation projects on the application of key technologies such as digital and mobile payments, blockchain, and big data.

The Government of Maharashtra will also facilitate the creation of a marketplace for FinTech solutions developed in Singapore and at the Centre of Excellence (COE) in Mumbai.

As under similar MOUs signed by the MAS, the Government of Maharashtra and MAS have agreed to exchange information relating to FinTech trends and discuss regulatory approaches to encourage innovation in the financial sector.

“Such MoUs are strategic steps towards achieving the vision of FinTech innovation in Maharashtra state – of making the state a leading centre of innovation in FinTech ecosystem. MAS's cooperation is a great example of friendship between our great nations and shall go a long way to build further milestones." added Mr S V R Srinivas, Principal Secretary, Information Technology, Government of Maharashtra.

“Singapore and India have been longstanding partners on many fronts. This agreement paves the way for greater FinTech collaboration between Singapore and Maharashtra. The creation of a Centre of Excellence and marketplace for FinTech solutions in Maharashtra could create more opportunities for Singapore-based FinTech firms.” said Mr Sopnendu Mohanty, Chief Fintech Officer, Monetary Authority of Singapore.

In October 2016, MAS signed a FinTech Cooperation Agreement with the State Government on Andhra Pradesh for exploration of joint innovation projects on technologies such as digital payments and blockchain, and collaborate on the development of education programmes/curricula on FinTech, along with the exchange of views on regulatory issues related to innovations.

MAS has signed agreements with financial regulators and other entities in many jurisdictions over the past couple of years, including Abu Dhabi, Australia, Denmark, Egypt, France, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Malaysia, Poland, South Korea, Switzerland, Thailand and the United Kingdom, the Association of Supervisors of Banks of the Americas.

Some of the co-operation agreements also include joint innovation projects. For instance, MAS and the Hong Kong Monetary Authority are jointly developing the Global Trade Connectivity Network, a cross-border platform for trade finance using distributed ledger technology. MAS and the Bank of Thailand have agreed to work together to link PayNow and PromptPay, their respective real-time, 24/7 payment systems for making payments from one bank account to another.