The SFC’s New Regulations
On Monday, Hong Kong’s SFC (Securities and Futures Commission) announced new measures that would help enhance security and transparency in the crypto sphere. One of the measures involves the publication of a list featuring licensed, application-pending, and shutting down VATPs (Virtual Asset Trading Platforms).
The new move comes a few days after a scandal involving crypto exchange JPEX was uncovered. SFC believes the list will help interested crypto investors identify unregulated trading platforms in Hong Kong and avoid them.
Moreover, the regulator said it was working with the police to create a dedicated channel for sharing information on any breaches or suspicious activities conducted by VATPs. SFC was also planning to share clear and transparent information about all trading platforms operating in Hong Kong to help investors understand the possible risks that each VATP poses.
Crypto Companies That Have Secured License From SFC
While speaking at a press conference on Monday, SFC’s charlady Julia Fung-Yee told the public that only two VATPs, Hash Blockchain Limited and OSL Digital Securities Limited, had secured licenses to offer services to retail investors in Hong Kong after the SFC implemented new crypto policies at the start of June.
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Fung-Yee also disclosed that four VATPs, including Victory Fintech Company Limited, Hong Kong BGE Limited, HKBitEx, and HKVAX, had already filed licensing applications. She, however, cautioned the public not to consider these licensing applicants as regulatory compliant until they obtain permits.
The JPEX Scandal
Earlier this month, Dubai-based cryptocurrency exchange JPEX was accused of stealing $182.5 million from 2,304 retail investors in Hong Kong. SFC said the trading platform had been operating unlicensed in the city. The agency called out several crypto influencers for lying to the public that JPEX had secured a license from the commission.
As of yesterday, the Hong Kong police had arrested eleven people involved in the JPEX scam, including Joseph Chok, a crypto influencer. The suspects are charged with fraud and running an unregistered crypto exchange. The founders of JPEX are, however, still at large.
Meanwhile, the digital asset trading platform claims that it was preparing to apply for a license before the grace period for the permit system comes to an end in November.
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