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Central bank of France to set up first Asian office in Singapore

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Ravi Menon, managing director of the MAS, said BDF joins a growing community of central banks, and pension funds that are anchoring their overseas offices in Singapore, to gain closer insights on economic and financial market developments in Asia.

THE central bank of France - Banque de France (BDF) - will open an Asian office in Singapore in early 2020, its second office abroad after New York, it said in a joint press statement with the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) on Tuesday.

BDF’s office in Singapore aims to boost monitoring of Asian economies and financial systems, as well as forge closer relations with central banks and financial authorities in the Asia-Oceania region. BDF will also set up a dealing room to strengthen its operational capacity to better serve international official sector entities in the Asian time zones.

In the statement, François Villeroy de Galhau, governor of BDF, said: “The future opening of a permanent office in Singapore will be a key step in strengthening our link with the Asian continent, which is highly important in today’s globalised world.”

Ravi Menon, managing director of the MAS, said BDF joins a growing community of central banks, as well as sovereign wealth and pension funds that have decided to anchor their overseas offices in Singapore, to gain closer insights on economic and financial market developments in Asia.

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MAS is also boosting global partnerships in fintech and cybersecurity via agreements at the sidelines of the Singapore FinTech Festival and Singapore Week of Innovation and TeCHnology (SFF x SWITCH) conference this year.

MAS plans to sign a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with BDF, and the Autorité de contrôle prudentiel et de résolution (ACPR), to enhance cooperation in cybersecurity. The ACPR monitors the activities of banks and insurance companies in France.

MAS has also separately signed a cooperation agreement with eight members of the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) to strengthen collaboration in fintech between Singapore and CSA’s member jurisdictions. The members are the securities regulatory authorities in Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Québec and Saskatchewan.

This agreement looks to improve access for fintech firms into each other's markets, while facilitating sharing on the regulatory sandbox approach, as well as on the latest fintech trends.

For more coverage on this year’s SFF x SWITCH, go to bt.sg/sffxswitch2019