Buy Now, Pay Later (“BNPL”) Code reaches next phase in Singapore
  • All existing BNPL Service Providers in Singapore have reached a new milestone in implementing safeguards in accordance with the BNPL Code
  • The BNPL Code of Conduct, which sets out industry guidelines and enforcement mechanisms for BNPL providers, aims to protect Singapore consumers

SINGAPORE, 9 November 2023 – The Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) Working Group, formed by the Singapore FinTech Association (SFA) and industry players, under the guidance of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), has announced that its Buy Now, Pay Later Code of Conduct (BNPL Code) has entered its next phase of implementation. All existing BNPL service providers are now required to comply with the Code from 1st November 2023 and be accredited by 31st March 2024. Any new BNPL entrants should seek to comply with the BNPL Code, prior to offering BNPL services in Singapore.

The Code of Conduct promotes industry best practices by stipulating safeguards to mitigate the risk of consumer over-indebtedness. The BNPL service providers in Singapore that have reached the latest milestone are: Ablr, Atome, Grab, LatitudePay, SeaMoney and ShopBack.

The significant progress made by BNPL firms towards adopting the Code of Conduct signifies the industry’s commitment to abide by a set of industry standards. To help ensure adoption and compliance with the Code, there are standards the BNPL providers must meet and be engaged with, including:

  1. A private credit bureau has been set up by global information technology services company, Experian, to facilitate the credit information sharing process. Credit information sharing will enable BNPL firms to consider a customer’s outstanding balance(s) across BNPL providers when conducting further credit assessments.
  2. BNPL providers are also required to undergo an audit by an independent assessor to ensure that they are Code compliant. SFA will then assess their qualification for accreditation. If successfully accredited, they will be able to display an accredited Trustmark indicating that they are compliant with the Code for three years, before having to be re-accredited. PwC has been appointed by all six named BNPL service providers as the independent assessor for their first assessment. Come 1st April 2024, the Trustmark will be awarded to accredited service providers and consumers can look out for this Trustmark on the BNPL providers’ websites and other collaterals.
    BNPL Code Compliant
  3. An Oversight Committee (OC), consisting of qualified and experienced members, has been formed to supervise and monitor Code compliance and in doing so, foster high standards of professionalism in the industry. The OC members are as follows:
    • Adrian Ang, Partner, Allen & Gledhill LLP
    • Rose Tong, Executive Director, Singapore Retailers Association
    • Rolf Haudenschild, Co-Founder, Head of Regulatory & Risk Services, Ingenia Consultants
    • Tan Huey Min, General Manager, Credit Counselling Singapore

Commenting on this announcement, Shadab Taiyabi, President of SFA, stated: “We are extremely pleased that all current providers of BNPL in Singapore are making significant positive progress with our Code of Conduct. This has all been done with the protection of consumers in mind, to make sure those benefiting from using BNPL in Singapore can do so in a protected and trusted environment. This Code of Conduct is robust and now enforceable, we look forward to seeing the impending positive impact we know it will have on the industry.”

Mr Andrew Tan, Executive Director (Prudential Policy Department), MAS, said “The industry has worked hard over the past year to implement the standards and safeguards in the BNPL Code, particularly to establish a credit information sharing process. We look forward to BNPL firms’ successful accreditation and earning the Trustmark by April 2024, which will help consumers recognise firms that have implemented the Code fully. The effective adoption of BNPL Code will improve consumer outcomes for BNPL users and mitigate risks of debt accumulation.”

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About Singapore FinTech Association (SFA)

The SFA is a cross-industry non-profit organisation. Its purpose is to support the development of the FinTech industry in Singapore and facilitate collaboration among the participants and stakeholders. The SFA is a member-based organisation with over 800+ members. It represents the full range of stakeholders in the FinTech industry, from early-stage innovative companies to large financial players and service providers. To further its purpose, the SFA also partners with institutions and associations from Singapore and globally to cooperate on initiatives relating to the FinTech industry. Well-connected globally, the SFA has signed over 70 international Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to lay the network for its members and ecosystem.

https://singaporefintech.org/

Existing BNPL Service Providers in Singapore:

  • Ablr
  • Atome
  • Grab
  • LatitudePay
  • ShopBack
  • SeaMoney

For media queries, please contact:
Hannah Polson, on behalf of SFA
[email protected]

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