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22 February 2020
TECHNOLOGY

Malaysia’s Axiata Group plans to bid for digital bank licence

Bank Negara Malaysia issued a draft policy in December 2019 for establishing digital banks

The central bank of Malaysia plans to offer up to five licences by the end of 2020/Bloomberg

by Bloomberg

Malaysia’s Axiata Group said that it plans to bid for a digital banking licence, as the country prepares to open up its finance industry to non-bank firms.

Mohd Izzaddin Idris, Axiata Group’s Deputy Chief Executive Officer said that Malaysia’s largest telecommunications company is in talks with 11 potential partners about readying a proposal.

They include banks and e-wallet operators, while declining to name the firms, said Mohd Izzadin.

Axiata would join non-banks such as Grab Holdings, Ant Financial and Singapore Telecommunications in seeking entry to digital finance in Asia. Hong Kong is set to see eight virtual lenders start operations this year, while Singapore plans to award up to five licences to non-banks by June 2020.

The central bank of Malaysia plans to offer up to five licences by the end of 2020, after finalising the policy in the first half of the year.

Axiata is in discussions with the central bank and expects its digital banking operation to start in the second half of next year, providing it gets approval, said Mohd Izzadin.


RELATED STORIES: Bank Negara Malaysia Malaysia Axiata Group

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