Hong Kong Grants First License to Cryptocurrency Trading Platform

Hong Kong now has its first regulated cryptocurrency trading platform. The Securities and Futures Commission has just given out the first-ever crypto license to OSL Digital Securities which will soon commence trading for several cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin.

Hong Kong Gives Out First Crypto License

Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) has licensed the first crypto trading platform in Hong Kong. The securities regulator announced Wednesday:

It has granted the first licence to a virtual asset trading platform in Hong Kong.

The SFC website shows that OSL Digital Securities Ltd. was licensed on Dec. 15. The Asian digital asset platform, a member of the Hong Kong stock exchange-listed BC Technology Group, is licensed for Type 1 (dealing in securities) and Type 7 (providing automated trading services) regulated activities. The regulator explained that the platform will only “serve professional investors under the close supervision of the SFC” and “will be subject to tailor-made requirements similar to those which apply to securities brokers and automated trading venues.”

Under Hong Kong’s existing crypto regulation, registration of crypto exchanges is optional but in a consultation launched in November, the government proposed a new crypto regulatory framework that allows the SFC to regulate all centralized crypto exchanges. The SFC emphasized that its approach to regulating cryptocurrencies “is consistent with the recommendations of international standard-setting bodies.”

OSL explained that when registration was optional, it opted to be licensed and “underwent the SFC’s rigorous vetting requirements.” The company now describes itself as “the world’s first SFC-licensed, listed, digital asset wallet-insured, Big-4 audited digital asset trading platform for institutions and professional investors.” OSL explained:

Upon go-live, OSL Digital Securities will offer customers safe, secure and compliant trading access to bitcoin (BTC), ethereum (ETH) and other high-quality cryptocurrencies, along with select security token offerings (STOs).

“Licensed entities are the future of digital assets and capital markets in the digital age and professional investors, hedge funds and family offices are now rapidly increasing portfolio allocations to digital assets such as bitcoin,” commented Matt Long, OSL Head of Distribution and Prime.

In addition to the Hong Kong licenses, OSL has also applied with the Monetary Authority of Singapore for a digital asset license under the Payment Services Act.

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