Hong Kong Lawmaker Urges Government to Follow US in Approving Spot Bitcoin ETFs

Ruholamin Haqshanas
Last updated: | 2 min read
Source: Pixabay

In the wake of the United States’ approval of spot Bitcoin ETFs, a lawmaker in Hong Kong has called on the local government to swiftly follow suit and position the city as a leader in the cryptocurrency space. 

Johnny Ng, a member of the Hong Kong Legislative Council, emphasized the importance of fostering innovation and taking proactive steps to solidify Hong Kong’s position as a global hub for virtual assets.

Highlighting the readiness expressed by the Securities and Futures Commission to accept applications for spot bitcoin ETFs, Ng stressed the need for Hong Kong to capitalize on the rapid development and intense competition in the virtual asset sector. 

“I hope that Hong Kong… can swiftly secure a position globally, particularly by taking the lead in implementing relevant policies and products in Asia,” he said in a post on X. 

Hong Kong Can Position itself as Leader by Approving Spot ETFs

Ng said the approval of spot Bitcoin ETFs can be a significant opportunity for Hong Kong to establish itself as a frontrunner in the crypto industry. 

By embracing crypto innovation and implementing forward-thinking policies, the city can attract investment and solidify its status as a global center for virtual assets.

In December, Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission and the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, the de facto central bank, announced that they had reviewed their existing policies regarding spot crypto ETFs. 

The regulators published two circulars outlining the requirements for such ETFs, which indicates the regulatory bodies’ commitment to fostering a conducive environment for the development of crypto investment products.

Livio Weng, the Chief Operating Officer of Hong Kong-based crypto exchange HashKey, revealed that 10 fund managers, some backed by Chinese capital, are currently exploring the launch of spot crypto ETFs in the city. 

Ng also called on the Hong Kong government to prioritize crypto education, emphasizing the importance of increasing public awareness of virtual assets while mitigating the risks of fraudulent activities. 

By enhancing public education initiatives, the government can empower individuals to make informed decisions and foster a safer and more robust crypto ecosystem.

Hong Kong to Expedite Approval Process For Crypto Products

The JPEX scandal, regarded as potentially the largest financial fraud in Hong Kong‘s history, has prompted the Hong Kong government to expedite the approval process for cryptocurrency products to promote compliance in the industry.

According to OSL Compliance Exchange, a licensed virtual asset platform, financial technology solution providers have shown interest in the potential benefits of integrating tokenized platforms with banks in the future. 

This integration could leverage the public’s trust in banks, thereby facilitating the growth of the virtual asset industry.

Back in June, Hong Kong implemented its new regulatory framework for crypto.

The new rulebook allows retail investors the ability to trade virtual assets, instead of restricting digital assets trading to professional investors and traders with at least $1 million in bankable assets.

As part of the new regulations, the SFC has also started providing licenses to crypto exchanges.