To foster the development of security token offerings (STOs) in Hong Kong, the Under Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury, Mr Joseph Chan; the Director of Licensing and Head of Fintech unit of the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), Ms Elizabeth Wong; and the Head of Fintech of Invest Hong Kong (InvestHK), Mr King Leung, co-hosted two meetings with STO industry representatives on September 14 and 16 as a follow-up to a closed-door meeting with a group of virtual asset industry leaders in mid-August.
Mr Chan stated that STOs had already been issued in Hong Kong and it was learned in the meetings last week that there was a strong pipeline of over ten interested issuers. He reiterated the Government’s commitment in supporting the healthy growth of fintech including STOs in Hong Kong. “The Hong Kong Special Administrative Government supports the development of fintech which offers a wide spectrum of innovative financial services to the community to support the growth of the real economy. We support the sustainable development of STO business in Hong Kong that meets the relevant regulatory and compliance requirements, particularly on ensuring investor protection and addressing the risk on the anti-money laundering/combating of terrorist-financing aspect.”, said Mr Chan.
Ms Wong also expressed the SFC’s support of the virtual asset industry, particularly in the use of distributed ledger technology in security offerings which may bring efficiency, transparency and lower costs. In addition, Ms Wong clarified many questions and market misconceptions related to a range of topics from STOs to the SFC’s regulatory principles, to the latest regulatory direction in this area. Ms Wong added that if firms are interested in STOs, they are encouraged to discuss their proposals with the Fintech unit of the SFC.
The Government puts high emphasis on the development of the fintech industry and will continue to engage with private sector stakeholders and listen to their suggestions. The Financial Services and the Treasury Bureau and InvestHK will continue to host similar meetings for exchanging viewpoints with the industry.
InvestHK is the department of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government responsible for attracting foreign direct investment. It has set up a dedicated fintech team in Hong Kong to attract the world’s top innovative fintech enterprises, start-up entrepreneurs, investors, and other stakeholders to set up or scale their business via Hong Kong into Mainland China, Asia, and beyond.
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