11.15.18 Your morning briefing

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The information you need to start your day, from PaymentsSource and around the Web:

A bigger sandbox
Singapore is already home to myriad payment, fintech and smart city initiatives; and is getting an extra jolt of momentum from the government.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore plans to fast-track approvals for companies that are building new financial or payment products or services, reports the Straits Times.

Similar to the sandbox in the U.K., startups can work with less regulatory oversight. Only in the case of Singapore, it's a "sandbox next to a sandbox," in which new companies in established business lines such as cross-border payments or insurance disbursements can go through an expedited approval process.
Extra laundering protection
Also in Singapore, Christine Lagarde, an IMF managing director, gave a speech pushing for central bank-based digital currencies, arguing they can promote financial inclusion.

Lagarde said Digital currency can help governments guide a move away from cash, providing more security in developed countries, reports the Financial Times.

The anonymity of cryptocurrencies can be protected through an authentication system in which identities are vetted but not disclosed, Lagarde said, adding this would support background AML and terrorist financial controls.

Boost for blockchain
The Commonwealth Bank of Australia contends blockchain can save time and costs for transactions, citing a recent test by Australia's National Disability Insurance Scheme and the country's research agency, CSIRO.

The test used an Ethereum network and smart contracts to locate, book and pay for NDIS services through an app with no receipts or other paperwork, reports CCN.

Participants reported the app saved up to 15 hours per week on benefits services, while the service provider said it cut almost one percent form expense.

In the mail
India's post office has soft launched an e-commerce portal with a full debut expected by the middle of December.

The launch from India Post comes as India's overall digital commerce market grows quickly, causing the postal service to focus more on e-commerce related revenue, reports the Economic Times.

Indirect revenue from shipping e-commerce orders increased 13 percent in the past year at India Post.

From the Web

Swiss competition watchdog investigates UBS, Credit Suisse for mobile pay agreements
CNBC | Thu November 15, 2018 - Switzerland has launched an investigation into a number of its financial companies, including big banks like Credit Suisse and UBS. WEKO, the country's competition watchdog, said Thursday that it will investigate some of the biggest financial firms for a suspected boycott of mobile payment solutions such as Apple Pay and Samsung. The list of firms to be investigated includes Aduno Holding, Postfinance, Swisscard and Swiss units of Credit Suisse and UBS, WEKO said.

Singapore, UK and Canada central banks issue joint report on cross-border payments
The Business Times | Thu November 15, 2018 - The central banks of Canada, Britain and Singapore on Thursday jointly released a report on cross-border payments and settlements, which provides a framework for assessing transactions in greater depth and discusses how alternative payment models can be implemented.

Morocco expects 50 billion dirhams in mobile payments by 2023
Reuters | Wed November 14, 2018 - Morocco expects mobile wallet payments to hit 50 billion dirhams ($5.3 billion) a year by 2023 as it prepares to launch a mobile payment service by the end of this month, a central bank official said on Tuesday. The new service aims to reduce the amount of cash used for payments and promote financial inclusion as more people in Morocco have mobile phones than bank accounts, Asmae Bennani, head of the central bank’s financial payment systems, told a news conference in Rabat.

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Influencers and authenticity add extra cheer to holiday payment spikes
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