Hong Kong Mulls OTC Crypto Trading and Stablecoin Regulation

Hong Kong mulls regulating stablecoin issuance and OTC crypto trading.

Coins falling in the digital land of Hong Kong.
Created by Kornelija Poderskytė from DailyCoin
  • Hong Kong has asserted its position on crypto regulation.
  • The special administrative region could propose new rules “as soon as practicable.”
  • A senior government official addressed the matter on Wednesday.

The Hong Kong government has expressed its readiness to push for licensing bills on stablecoin issuance and over-the-counter (OTC) crypto trading “as soon as practicable.”

Christopher Hui, the Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury, addressed the matter on February 21 in a written reply to Carmen Kan, a member of the Legislative Council. Kan wanted to know the government’s position on “steering” a regulatory regime for crypto at the policy level.

Hong Kong Government Ready for Crypto Regulation Bills

In his response, Hui reiterated that Hong Kong’s government was committed to enhancing a comprehensive virtual asset regulatory regime, evidenced by two ongoing public consultations on licensing regulations for stablecoin and OTC trading operators.

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In December last year, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) and the Financial Services and the Treasury Bureau (FSTB) launched a public consultation on regulating stablecoin issuers. The consultation will run up to February 29.

Separately, the FSTB launched on February 8 another public consultation on legislative proposals to bring the licensing of OTC crypto trading services under the purview of the Commissioner of Customs and Excise (CCE). The consultation will end on April 12.

Per Hui’s response, the government is keen on initiating the above licensing bills once both consultations are over.

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“Subject to the consultation outcomes and progress of the preparatory work, the Government will submit bills on the above licensing regimes to the Legislative Council as soon as practicable,” Hui wrote.

In demonstrating the need for effective crypto regulation, Hui revealed that the SFC is increasingly cracking down on virtual asset-related criminal cases, which have nearly tripled in the last three years.

The SFC and other law enforcement agencies cracked down on 3,415 cases in 2023 compared to 2,336 cases in 2022 and 1,397 cases in 2023.

Read why crypto exchanges must register in Hong Kong:
Hong Kong Crypto Exchanges Must Register: SFC Issues Warning

Stay updated on Worldcoin’s troubles in Hong Kong:
Hong Kong Privacy Watchdog Raids Worldcoin Offices

This article is for information purposes only and should not be considered trading or investment advice. Nothing herein shall be construed as financial, legal, or tax advice. Trading forex, cryptocurrencies, and CFDs pose a considerable risk of loss.

Author
Brian Danga

Brian Danga, a Kenyan crypto reporter, is dedicated to delivering breaking news and updates from the cryptocurrency world. With a background as a Web3 writer and project manager, he recognizes the importance of unbiased reporting. Holding an LLB degree from the University of Nairobi, Brian's analytical skills contribute to his accurate news reporting. His personal interests include cooking, watching documentaries, reading, and engaging in intellectual discussions.