Nature of E-money

What is "limited purpose e-money"?


  • "limited purpose e-money" is e-money that has limited purpose monetary value such as supermarket shopping vouchers and loyalty programmes that cannot be used to pay for unrelated third party goods or services.

    The full definition of "limited purpose e-money" can be found at Part 3 of the First Schedule of the Payment Services Act.

    According to MAS (FAQs)
    last revised 31 March 2021

    The PS Act governs the provision of payment services. As such, the issuance of e-money that can be used to pay for various goods and services are regulated as a type of payment service, and customer money paid in exchange for such e-money are protected under the PS Act. On the other hand, limited purpose monetary value such as supermarket shopping vouchers and loyalty programmes like airline frequent flyer miles, cannot ordinarily be used to pay for goods and services provided by unrelated third parties.

    As such, these activities are excluded from the ambit of the PS Act. We recognise that several retail sectors like supermarkets, restaurants, spas and gyms often have retail programs for customers that involve prepayment for goods and services that they will supply. However, as the purchasers of such vouchers usually cannot use them to pay other people or merchants, the provision of such vouchers is not regulated under the PS Act.