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Cryptocurrency Companies Gear Up for Licensing in Hong Kong Prior to Retail Launch

Cryptocurrency Companies Gear Up for Licensing in Hong Kong Prior to Retail Launch

The scramble for the attention of Hong Kong’s retail cryptocurrency traders is poised to intensify, as several cryptocurrency enterprises have declared their intention to apply for operating licenses as of June 1.

On May 29, the CoinEx crypto exchange, based in Hong Kong, was the latest firm to announce its move into the city, indicating that it would launch a local platform named BitHK. BitHK will submit its application for a Virtual Asset Service Provider (VASP) license to the city’s securities regulatory body on June 1.

Cryptocurrency Entities Pave the Way

Simultaneously, Huobi made public via Twitter that its Hong Kong unit was now facilitating cryptocurrency trading for local retail traders. The company sent its VASP application to the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) on May 29.

Last week saw cryptocurrency exchanges and BitMEX declare their own applications and unveil their dedicated crypto trading services for the Hong Kong market.

Broad Spectrum of Applicants

Among others expressing their interest in securing a VASP license include OKX, ZA Bank – the city’s leading digital bank, and a subsidiary of Greenland Holdings – a state-owned conglomerate spanning multiple industries in China.

The SFC released a statement on May 23, stating that as of June 1, licensed VASPs could provide services to retail investors. Entities willing to adhere to the commission’s guidelines on secure asset custody, security standards, and asset separation, among others, are invited to submit a license application.

Also, on May 29, the Hong Kong Licensed Virtual Assets Association (HKLVAA) and Web3 Harbour – two new entities in the crypto industry – jointly released a statement announcing their inauguration.

These newly formed organizations cater to distinct segments of the sector. The HKLVAA focuses on serving VASP-licensed firms and those looking to acquire licenses in the city. In contrast, Web3 Harbour has set its sights on supporting the development of the local Web3 ecosystem.

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