Hong Kong Opens License Applications for Crypto Companies
On June 1st, Hong Kong regulators opened the process for acquiring the license to operate as a cryptocurrency exchange within the city. The move is in accordance with the new digital assets framework that was adopted in the second half of May.
Hong Kong SFC Opens Licensing For Crypto Exchanges
This Thursday, Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) started accepting registrations for the new license intended for cryptocurrency exchanges. The move follows the new regulatory framework within the city that was unveiled on May 23rd.
Perhaps the most notable feature of the new framework is the decision to allow retail investors in the city to access digital assets. The set of rules, however, also foresees a strict set of requirements that interested companies have to adhere to.
These include capital of over $680,000 and robust guardrails pertaining to onboarding, disclosure, token due diligence, and governance. Since the framework was unveiled in late May, numerous cryptocurrency companies have already expressed interest in operating in Hong Kong.
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Crypto Firms Flock to Hong Kong
Hong Kong’s recent warming up to digital assets stands in stark contrast with mainland China which has maintained a ban on cryptocurrencies in one form or another since 2018. As a result of the opening, numerous firms have expressed an interest in acquiring the new license in the city.
Reportedly, firms from Mainland China are particularly keen on operating in Hong Kong. Among the 80 or so companies interested in getting the license from the SFC are several well-known names.
Last week, the cryptocurrency exchange Huobi introduced its Hong Kong branch and stated it is ready to file its application. Earlier this week, CoinEX announced the launch of its new platform—BitHK—aimed at serving investors and traders in the city.
Do you think Hong Kong’s opening is a prelude to a more crypto-friendly China? Let us know in the comments below.