The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has on Monday announced that it will commit up to SGD 150 million ($111.47 million) over three years under the renewed Financial Sector Technology and Innovation Scheme (FSTI 3.0).

MAS said in a statement that FSTI 3.0 seeks to accelerate and strengthen innovation by supporting projects that involve the use of cutting-edge technologies or with a regional nexus, while doubling down on MAS’ commitment to promote a vibrant technology ecosystem for the financial sector.

FSTI 3.0 will comprise the following new tracks:

Enhanced Center of Excellence track – Formerly known as the Innovation Labs track, the scope of grant funding will be expanded to include corporate venture capital (CVC) entities, at funding support of up to 50 percent of qualifying expenses, capped at SGD 2 million ($1.49 million) per project.

Given the importance of CVCs in identifying and nurturing the next generation of start-ups, the funding will enable CVCs to offer strong mentorship and support to help start-ups scale and develop resilient and viable business models.

Innovation Acceleration track – MAS recognizes the importance of partnering with the industry to support innovative FinTech solutions arising from emerging technologies such as Web 3.0.

MAS will conduct open calls for the use of innovative technologies in industry use cases. Grant funding will be provided to support actual trial and commercialization.

Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) FinTech track – To spur adoption of ESG fintech solutions, this track aims to support the development and deployment of projects that address ESG data, reporting, and analytics needs of the financial sector, at funding support of up to 50 percent of qualifying expenses, capped at SGD 500,000 ($371,553) per project.

According to the statement, FSTI 3.0 will continue to support advanced capability development and adoption in key areas such as artificial intelligence and data analytics (AIDA), and regulation technology (RegTech).

Specifically, MAS will focus on promoting AIDA adoption in smaller financial firms and supporting the needs of less digitally mature firms looking to acquire RegTech solutions.

Across tracks, applicants will also be required to devote resources to talent development, in order to strengthen the Singaporean FinTech talent pool.

“Since 2015, the Financial Sector Development Fund (FSDF) has awarded $340 million as part of the FSTI program to drive the adoption of technology and innovation in the financial sector,” said Ravi Menon, Managing Director of MAS.

According to him, the transformative technology projects that MAS has piloted with the industry include SGFinDex, Project Orchid’s Purpose Bound Money, Project Veritas’ Responsible AI, green and sustainable finance through Project Greenprint, as well as large payment initiatives such as the cross-border payment linkage with Thailand.

Notably, he said FSTI 1.0 and 2.0 helped strengthen the digital capabilities of financial institutions which served them and their customers through the COVID pandemic.

“With FSTI 3.0, we look forward to continued collaboration with the industry to advance purposeful financial innovation,” he said.

United Kingdom and Singapore enhance cooperation in sustainable finance, FinTech