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Regulatory Sandboxes: A Practice For Innovation That Is Trending Worldwide

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Regulatory sandboxes innovative blockchain trending

Over the past couple of years, a number of countries have initiated ‘regulatory sandboxes’ to facilitate growth in their financial sectors. Regulatory sandbox usually implement a set of rules that allow trailblazers to test their products and business models in a live environment with minimal legal requirements. The majority of these programs come with predefined restrictions, such as limitations on clients, time-limit testing, predetermined exceptions, and testing under regulator supervision. Their purpose is to minimize legal uncertainty, improve access to investment, and create rules for new products and business models.

Bahrain

Recently, Bahrain announced it is organizing a plan to transform the Middle East fintech space and invigorate its internal economy by way of using the blockchain as a key tool, and is working to establish a corresponding regulatory sandbox. CEO of The Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB), Khalid Al Rumaihi, stated recently during the GCC financial forum in Manama:

“We are in talks with a group of people from the central bank of Singapore, which began its own blockchain project for bank transactions 18 months ago and is making huge progress. The ability for blockchain to be adopted at the country level is a huge opportunity for Bahrain to move into the spotlight as a pioneer in this space.”

Singapore

In June 2016, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) proposed guidelines for a sandbox that enables financial and non-financial institutions to test fintech solutions in an environment with relaxed regulatory requirements. The MAS examines applicants based on qualities such as ingenuity and the ability to distribute the product nationwide.

The MAS, Singapore’s stock exchange, and eight local and foreign banks are collaborating on a project to utilize blockchain technology for interbank payments.

Canada

On February 23, 2017, the Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) announced the launching of a regulatory sandbox initiative that is open to business models focused on energizing the Canadian market. This includes cryptocurrency or distributed ledger based ventures, the utilization of artificial intelligence for trading, regulatory technology, and online investment platforms. During the application process, CSA staff may request live environment testing, a business plan, and/or a demonstration of how…

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