Stablecoins have been part of the government-sponsored Project Ubin, which tested blockchain technology in a real-world environment. On Monday, payments solution provider Xfers announced that it officially released XSGD, a stablecoin that is pegged to the Singapore Dollar (SGD).
“They have been booming in the past 2–3 years, but 98% of the stablecoins in circulation are USD denominated,” Aymeric Salley, head of the project StraitsX, told KrASIA. “We believe that other currencies need to catch up, this is important for Singapore.”
Salley said that his team is receiving a lot of calls from local banks. They have had a lot of discussions over the past 8 or 9 months, on how they are designing it, on how it could be employed for the use cases they have. “We are seeing the first applications now, which are cross-border payments by banks or institutions,” he said. “That’s one use case we want to explore with financial institutions in Singapore.”
There have been talks with payment providers as well, and he thinks that in a few months, people will be able to buy a coffee or groceries using the stablecoin. “It’s going to bring disintermediation, a lot cheaper fees,” Salley said. “As a retail customer I might not notice, as the fees are passed on to the merchants mostly. But merchants are going to capture a lot more of the value of that transaction.”
The firm says that XSGD is the world’s first travel rule-compliant stablecoin. All transfers conducted with it will carry identifying information to combat money laundering. XSGD assets will also be safeguarded by regulated banks. Users can convert SGD into XSGD, and vice versa, at a 1:1 rate within one business day via the Xfers platform.
The stablecoin is part of Xfers’ initiative StraitsX, which aims to create a seamless, secure, and transparent financial ecosystem. The token is powered by the blockchain platforms Zilliqa and Ethereum.
Xfers was founded in Singapore in 2015 and is licensed by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). The firm, which is backed by Facebook co-founder Eduardo Saverin, also provides payment solutions in Indonesia.