As of the end of February, more than 80 crypto-related companies have expressed interest in establishing a presence in Hong Kong, said Christopher Hui, Hong Kong’s Financial Services Secretary and Ministry of Finance.

Hui added that 23 cryptocurrency firms have already indicated their “plans to establish a presence in Hong Kong.”

March 20th speechAccording to Hui, these businesses include blockchain infrastructure companies, blockchain network security companies, cryptocurrency wallets, payment companies, and other projects built on the web3 ecosystem.

According to Hui, this wave of interest comes as the government released a policy statement on virtual asset development. He added that the city already has a vibrant fintech ecosystem, with over 800 companies providing financial services to members of the public and business sectors.

Hong Kong continues to tighten regulations

Hui said the Hong Kong government is not resting on its laurels as it is currently working to establish a licensing regime for virtual asset service providers by June 2023.

Hui added that the city hopes the licensing regime will encourage “more quality VA firms to set up operations in Hong Kong or seek development opportunities in Hong Kong.”

In addition to the licensing regime, the government is also working on a comprehensive regulatory regime for stablecoins. The city aims to implement these regulations by 2024.

Hong Kong looks to own CBDC, testing digital yuan for cross-border payments

Hui said the city is working with mainland China to test the use of the digital yuan (digital renminbi) when making cross-border payments.

Hui said the city has also collaborated with cross-border central banks on multiple central bank digital currency (CBDC) bridge projects to facilitate cross-border payments. he added:

“We are also investigating issues related to the possible issuance of electronic Hong Kong dollars.”

By Jules

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