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Sustainable Finance and FinTech Partnership: UK-Singapore Collaboration

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Singapore and the United Kingdom convened the 9th UK-Singapore Financial Dialogue in Singapore, a significant milestone in their ongoing partnership. The dialogue, a platform for fostering collaboration and sharing insights, focused on key areas such as sustainable finance, FinTech and innovation. With sustainability and technological innovation at the forefront, both nations explored avenues for cooperation to address global challenges and drive progress in the financial sector.

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Sustainable Finance took centre stage during the dialogue, reflecting the shared commitment of the UK and Singapore to advance financing initiatives in support of the global net zero agenda. Emphasising the importance of transition planning, both countries reaffirmed the need for globally consistent plans to facilitate transition finance.

The UK provided updates on the progress of its Transition Plan Taskforce’s disclosure framework, while Singapore shared insights into its Transition Planning Guidelines, designed to foster climate resilience and manage risks associated with transitioning to a net zero economy.

The dialogue also delved into Disclosure Standards and ESG Ratings, underscoring the commitment of both nations to implementing the International Sustainability Standards Board’s (ISSB) standards. Recognising the importance of consistent and reliable sustainability-related disclosures, discussions revolved around voluntary codes of conduct for ESG ratings and data product providers, aligned with recommendations from the International Organisation of Securities Commissions (IOSCO).

Furthermore, Sustainable Infrastructure Investment emerged as a key focus area, with both the UK and Singapore acknowledging the funding gap for green and transition finance in Asia. In response, they pledged to collaborate on developing and financing green finance and energy transition projects in the region. Singapore highlighted its blended finance initiative, the Financing Asia’s Transition Partnership (FAST-P), aimed at mobilising financing for green projects in Asia and accelerating the transition to a sustainable future.

In the realm of FinTech and Innovation, discussions concentrated on managing risks and harnessing opportunities in the digital space. Artificial Intelligence emerged as a critical topic, with both countries addressing financial stability and cybersecurity risks associated with increased AI usage in the financial sector.

Emphasising the importance of international standards in fostering innovation while mitigating risks, the dialogue explored avenues for collaboration through international fora such as IOSCO and the Financial Stability Board (FSB).

Cryptoassets were another area of attention, with the UK providing updates on its regulatory regime for cryptoassets. Plans to regulate fiat-referenced stablecoins and explore retail and wholesale Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) options were discussed, highlighting efforts to create a conducive environment for innovation while ensuring regulatory oversight.

Additionally, Tokenisation and Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) were discussed extensively, with both countries sharing insights into their respective projects and initiatives. Collaboration efforts aim to advance discussions on the regulatory treatment of digital assets and explore ways to leverage tokenisation and DLT to enhance the efficiency and resilience of the financial ecosystem.

The dialogue also addressed recent developments in the NBFI Sector and Cross-Border Payment Connectivity, underlining the importance of enhancing authorities’ ability to monitor risks and improving cross-border payment systems. Both countries reiterated their commitment to international policy work on NBFI and the G20’s Roadmap to Enhancing Cross-Border Payments, emphasising the need for cooperation and coordination at the global level.

Scheduled industry-led roundtables on Transition Planning and Generative AI, jointly chaired by senior officials from MAS and HMT, demonstrate an ongoing commitment to fostering innovation and sustainability in finance. These forums offer stakeholders a platform to share insights and seek collaboration opportunities.

The 9th UK-Singapore Financial Dialogue underscores the deepening partnership between the UK and Singapore in navigating the evolving landscape of finance and technology. By leveraging their respective strengths and expertise, both nations are poised to drive progress and shape the future of sustainable finance and FinTech on a global scale.


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