MAS launches $1.25m fintech challenge to tackle climate change & COVID-19
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has announced the launch of a $1.25 million fintech innovation challenge centred around COVID-19 and climate change.
Through the MAS Global FinTech Innovation Challenge, the regulator aims to promote fintech solutions that will help financial institutions “adapt effectively to the new operating environment precipitated by the COVID-19 pandemic” as well as “spur the development of green finance in Asia and globally.”
The competition comprises the “revamped” MAS FinTech Awards and the MAS Global FinTech Hackcelerator and will be hosted entirely on the API Exchange (APIX), a cloud-based innovation platform.
“The unique challenges posed by the health, economic, and climate crises which we are facing will inspire bold innovations and solutions,” says Sopnendu Mohanty, chief fintech officer at MAS.
“MAS is delighted to recognise through the fintech Awards effective solutions that have already been implemented, as well as help match industry partners with innovative fintech firms seeking more support for their ideas through the Hackcelerator programme.”
In all, up to 12 winners will be selected to receive a total of $900,000 in prize money.
Jacqueline Loh, deputy manager of MAS, says that the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in “significant health, economic and social challenges globally.”
Speaking at a virtual event for the Asian Venture Philanthropy Network (AVPN), she remarked that addressing challengers like climate change requires policymakers, financial institutions, corporates, and more “to come together on a common global challenge.”
She adds: “It is important now, more than ever, that countries not only rebuild their economies and preserve jobs, but also in the process, intentionally build a more sustainable new economy.
“There have been growing calls for governments to prioritise or accelerate green infrastructure development as part of recovery plans.”
MAS plans to release a consultation paper on its Environmental Risk Management Guidelines for the banking, insurance, and asset management sectors later this year.
These guidelines will set standards on governance, risk management, and disclosure, and will aim to enhance the country’s financial system when it comes to weathering to environmental risk.