SFC to introduce open crypto exchange

The Hong Kong Securities and Future Commission (SFC) announced that soon licensed platforms will be accessible to serve retail investors.

After the announcement, the operators of virtual asset trading platforms are willing to support SFC’s decision and guidelines to apply for a license. Virtual asset trading platforms need to take care of certain aspects like asset custody safety requirements, cyber security standards, and segregation of client assets, among others.

SFC CEO Julia Leung explains that clear guidelines are the ‘key’ to creating a responsible and innovative environment. “Hong Kong’s comprehensive virtual assets regulatory framework follows the principle of ‘same business, same risks, same rules, and aims to provide robust investor protection and manage key risks.”

This announcement will become effective in June 2023 and there is a lot of work pending related to improvising guidelines such as providing services to retail investors through a virtual asset trading platform. After taking this initiation, 152 written requests have been registered with SFC.

Greenland, the state-owned Chinese company, applied for a virtual asset trading license on May 17th in Hong Kong.

Moreover, SFC stated that it would implement a ‘number of robust’ measures to ensure security for retail investors. It includes good governance, enhanced token due diligence, onboarding process suitability, admission criteria, and disclosure.

Neil Tan, Chairman of the FinTech Association Hong Kong, said that the country’s focus on the financial industry for digital assets is just a natural progression.

The announcement mentioned that most virtual asset trading platforms running in the market are not operated by SFC. It further says that those who are not willing to be a part of license work can plan an ‘orderly disclosure’ business operation in Hong Kong.

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- Published By Team Hongkong Journalist

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