March 17, 2014
On 13th March 2014, Singapore's Central Bank announced its plans to begin regulating virtual currency intermediaries such as bitcoin exchanges and vending machines. This move was made in order to address concerns regarding the possible use of virtual currencies for illicit transactions. Singapore follows USA as only the second country to discuss regulations.
'Consumers and businesses should take note of the broader risks that dealing in virtual currencies entails and should exercise the necessary caution,' said MAS deputy managing director Ong Chong Tee.
The initiative comes not long after a top Bitcoin exchange in Tokyo, Mt Gox, filed for bankruptcy protection last month. The first bitcoin vending machine, designed by local startup Tembusu Terminals, started business on February 27th. Singapore currently has at least two Bitcoin exchanges and around half a dozen Bitcoin 'ATMs'.