Hong Kong Regulator to List Crypto Assets Allowed to Retail Investors

The Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) is going to publish a document with a list of permitted crypto assets and licensing rules for crypto companies. Speaking at the Asian Financial Forum, SFC Chair Julia Leung Fung-yee said Hong Kong regulators will focus on digital asset supervision rules this year due to increased trading volume.. The “white list” will include crypto assets that retail investors and traders will be allowed to trade. “Some virtual asset trading platforms have over 2,000 products, but this does not mean that we will allow individuals to trade all. We will define criteria according to which users will be able to trade only the main crypto-assets,” said the chairman of the SFC. The official added that the SFC will hold a public consultation on crypto retail regulation rules and publish a document before the end of the first quarter.. The document will specify new licensing standards for cryptocurrency exchanges and other virtual asset service providers (VASPs). According to Leung Fung-i, the initiative is aimed at protecting investors, as the regulator fears another fall in the cryptocurrency market. SFC will begin accepting applications for a VASP license in mid-2024. In the absence of a license from cryptocurrency platforms, violators face a large fine or imprisonment. In December, the Hong Kong Parliament passed amendments to the anti-money laundering and counter-terrorist financing laws that would make VASPs subject to the same requirements as traditional financial institutions.. However, the Hong Kong authorities have recently announced their readiness to interact with cryptocurrency companies.