In a step away from what has become regular news about civil unrest, today’s news out of Hong Kong has been dominated by two significant occurrences. The first being a release of new regulatory framework for cryptocurrency exchanges in Hong Kong. With the second being a deal between the Honk Kong Central Bank and mainland China for a push towards Blockchain adoption.
For spectators and stakeholders alike, the recent uptick in Blockchain and Cryptocurrency interest in a region that historically played a big role in the digital assets sphere, is bound to set some tails wagging. So let’s take a look at what’s been happening in crypto-Asia.
Hong Kong’s Financial Regulator to Crypto Exchange Framework
Many regulators around the world have been at odds with themselves on whether or not to regulate the trading of digital assets, and if regulated, should they fall into the same bracket as the already regulated financial assets?
For Hong Kong’s Financial watchdog (SFC), the process of answering that question went as follows,
“We met with a large number of crypto platform operators to see … whether some platforms were in fact capable of operating in a regulated environment. After an in-depth examination of their unique technical and operational features, we concluded that some could be regulated by us.”
SFC Chief Executive, Ashley Alder, as reported by New York Times.
The new rules are pretty much a copy paste of the same standards that the conventional securities and Futures brokers have to follow. Besides issues that are uniquely Cryptocurrency market issues, the new rules look to bolster KYC and AML compliance in this space. A good portion of the most used cryptocurrency exchanges are based in Hong Kong and, have until now, been able to operate in a legal grey area.
Hong Kong Central Bank & People’s Bank of China Sign Pro-Blockchain MoU
According to the press release, a memorandum of understanding between the Hong Kong Central Bank (HKCB) and the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) has been signed, with the aim of linking two existing projects: the PCoB’s Trade Finance Platform and the HKCB’s eTradeConnect platform.
“Once the connection has successfully been established, it will provide firms in both places with more convenient trade finance services and enable banks in Hong Kong to expedite the expansion of their trade finance business,” Read the post.
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