Shortly after the Hong Kong Financial Services and Treasury Bureau outlined their vision to develop Hong Kong into an international virtual assets hub, HashKey Group obtains full licenses for a virtual asset trading platform.
Hash Blockchain Limited (HBL), a member of the HashKey Group, an Asia-based digital asset financial services group, has received full licenses from the Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong (SFC).
The approval from SFC ensures that HBL can operate a virtual asset trading platform, under two separate licenses. Receiving its ‘Type 1’ licence enables the digital asset management company to deal in securities. The firm also received its ‘Type 7’ licence for professional investors, enabling it to provide automated trading services.
With this news, HashKey Group becomes the first group of its kind to obtain virtual asset licences from both SFC, and the Financial Services Agency of Japan, alongside an exemption to operate under the ‘Payment Services Act’ from the Monetary Authority of Singapore.
The licences mean that HBL has taken another step towards rolling out its virtual asset trading platform, ‘HashKey PRO’. The trading platform aims to provide professional investors with automated trading services for cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ether. The platform also plans to provide automated trading services for the likes of stablecoins, security tokens and other innovative assets.
In October 2022, Hong Kong’s Financial Services and Treasury Bureau released a statement outlining the city’s plans to develop Hong Kong into an international virtual assets hub. The issuance of the above licenses appears in accordance with these plans.
HashKey Group plans next steps
Michel Lee, executive president of HashKey Group, explained the importance of gaining the licences. He said: “The recent policy statement is a testament to the Hong Kong government’s dedication and commitment to fortify the city’s status as a frontrunner and leader in blockchain and virtual asset innovation and regulation.
“We are delighted to have received the licences given the backdrop of this positive announcement. This enables us to provide regulated and compliant virtual asset trading services as we continue to help build the financial, technological and service infrastructure to facilitate and contribute to the rapid growth and the long-term development of the ecosystem.”
Colin Zhong, CEO of Hash Blockchain Limited, explained the company’s aims after receiving the licenses from SFC. He said: “Our objective is to build a platform that is best in class in terms of technology, security and trading experience for our clients. One of the focuses of HashKey’s virtual asset exchange will be on the tokenisation of non-traditional assets, leveraging the robust ecosystem HashKey has developed over the years.
“Apart from trading services, HashKey is also dedicated to supporting and providing a gateway for financial institutions and corporates to gain exposure to, and participate in, crypto projects through our comprehensive ecosystem across the digital asset landscape and Web3 infrastructure services.”