As we find ourselves already halfway through 2023, it’s remarkable to see the positive developments taking place in the digital asset space. Notably, Hong Kong is making strides to become a leader in the digital asset space with new guidelines for retail investors to trade cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ether under necessary safety measures. This move comes ahead of the introduction of a licensing regime for virtual asset platforms on June 1, part of Hong Kong’s effort to restore its modern financial center status. However, the move is controversial due to a global spate of bankruptcies caused by the market rout in 2022. Regulators worldwide are grappling with how to handle the crypto industry, with different jurisdictions adopting different approaches.
One of the first digital banks to take advantage of Hong Kong’s new guidelines for virtual asset trading is ZA Bank, which plans to offer digital asset retail trading through partnerships with locally licensed virtual asset exchanges. ZA Bank’s larger strategy includes trading in US stocks in the future. While most virtual asset trading platforms accessible to the public in Hong Kong are not currently regulated by the SFC.
We’re not only seeing support in virtual asset trading, but also exploring the possibilities of central bank digital currencies. The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) has launched a pilot program for e-HKD, a central bank digital currency (CBDC) for retail purposes. Sixteen firms from the financial, payments and technology sectors will be taking part in the first round of pilots to explore potential use cases in six categories, including full-fledged payments, tokenized deposits and settlement of tokenized assets. The HKMA’s e-HKD pilot programme is a key part of its approach to the possible implementation of a retail CBDC, and will refine the authority’s perspective on the matter.
With the digital asset sector in Hong Kong is on the rise, thought-leaders from various institutions are coming together to discuss its potential. We were pleased to attend an event hosted by OSL this month - one of the two licensed virtual assets trading platforms in Hong Kong. The event invited students from the Hong Kong University (HKU) EMBA program and members of the Hong Kong Securities and Investment Institute (HKSI). It was a great opportunity to discuss the future of the digital asset space, as nurturing the growth of the ecosystem has always been OAX Foundation’s priorities.
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While we understand the enthusiasm and concerns about our token performance, we’d like to reassure our community members that we are actively planning the next steps for the project and are looking forward to more development updates on Notifs’ end. In the meantime, now’s as good a time as any to remind you all again that we are currently not running any forms of Airdrops - and we definitely will never ask you to deposit funds for no reason!
Please practice utmost caution and be aware of fraudulent activities and impersonations in this space. If you come across any strange activities, please do not hesitate to reach out to us through any of our channels, we’re all ears.