Media Releases
Published Date: 08 September 2003

Singapore Dollar Joins Continuous Linked Settlements System

Singapore, 8 September 2003...The Singapore Dollar (SGD) will begin live settlement on 11 September 2003 as an eligible currency of CLS Bank International (CLS Bank), a key international foreign exchange (FX) settlement system designed to reduce FX settlement risk.

2   CLS Bank eliminates FX settlement risk through the world's first simultaneous global multi-currency settlement system. Since its launch a year ago this week, CLS Bank has settled a total of over 14 million payment instructions with a gross value of over US$160 trillion.

3   With the inclusion of the SGD, CLS Bank will settle payment instructions associated with foreign exchange trades in a total of 11 currencies, including the Australian Dollar, Canadian Dollar, Danish Krone, Euro, Japanese Yen, Norwegian Krone, Pound Sterling, Swedish Krona, Swiss Franc and US Dollar.

4   "The inclusion of the Singapore Dollar in CLS will benefit banks here and we welcome it as a major milestone for Singapore to create a safer FX settlement environment," said Mr Enoch Ch'ng, Executive Director of Monetary Authority of Singapore's Specialist Risk Supervision Department.

5   The immense FX settlement risks faced by financial systems have been a key concern shared by the Monetary Authority of Singapore and international regulators. The inclusion of SGD in CLS will allow banks here to reap the risk management benefits of CLS in their SGD FX trades against the other major global currencies.

6   This is also a significant development for Singapore as a financial hub. Financial institutions will not only find it more attractive and safer to conduct their currency operations here, they will also be able to offer a wider range of currency services to their customers. Singapore is currently the fourth largest FX trading centre in the world.

7   Three local banks - Development Bank of Singapore Ltd (DBS Bank), Overseas Chinese Banking Corporation Ltd (OCBC Bank), and United Overseas Bank (UOB), who are CLS shareholders - started settling their eligible FX trades through CLS Bank in December 2002.  For efficiency, the three banks have established Clearing & Payment Services Pte Ltd (CAPS), a common clearing utility, to aggregate and share the processing of their CLS transactions.

8   Mrs Ong-Ang Ai Boon, Director of The Association of Banks in Singapore, also welcomed the inclusion of the SGD in CLS. "Putting the SGD on the CLS map is a strong testimony of how far Singapore has come as a financial centre. The banks in Singapore welcome this as a strategic move to manage and reduce FX settlement risk in our financial system," said Mrs Ong-Ang.


Notes to Editors:

CLS Group and CLS Bank:

Continuous Linked Settlement (CLSTM) is a unique process that enables cross border currency transactions to be settled intraday on a payment versus payment basis. It is a real time, global settlement system that eliminates the settlement risk caused by delays arising from settlement across time zones. CLS represents the most dramatic change in FX settlement in over 300 years - previously banks had to rely on a global network of correspondents and a degree of faith that they had received their payments in one currency as they paid away another - CLS turns this faith into certainty.
The CLS service is offered by CLS Bank International (CLS Bank), and is supported by over 65 of the world's largest global financial institutions. Together they account for a substantial majority of the cross-currency transactions across the globe.

CLS Bank links to the Real Time Gross Settlement systems operated by Central Banks in eleven currencies (US Dollar, Euro, UK Sterling, Japanese Yen, Swiss Franc, Canadian Dollar, Australian Dollar, Swedish Krona, Danish Krone, Norwegian Krone and the Singapore Dollar). Additional currencies will be added over time with the Hong Kong Dollar, the New Zealand Dollar and the Korean Won due to become CLS Bank eligible currencies once all the requirements in CLS Bank's Rules have been satisfied and regulatory approval has been obtained. CLS Bank is based in New York and is an Edge Corporation bank supervisored by the Federal Reserve.
CLS is a trademark of CLS UK Intermediate Holdings Ltd.

For a list of Settlement Members and media contacts visit the CLS Website at

Clearing & Payment Services Pte Ltd (CAPS)

CAPS was incorporated in Singapore in 2002 as a shared services centre that initially focuses on CLS. It provides straight-through processing services and secure messaging solutions to the financial services industry. The founding shareholders of CAPS are DBS, OCBC Bank and UOB.

CAPS is positioned to play a key role in helping develop Singapore as a leading centre for financial services in the region. Its vision is to create a global centre of excellence for outsourced financial processes reputed for value added, cost effective, secure and reliable services.