Hong Kong authorities have proposed accepting and regulating fiat-pegged stablecoins (FRS).
According to the document, the Financial Services and the Treasury Bureau (FSTB) and the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) will allow retail investors to purchase stablecoins, but note that their issuers must obtain a special local HKMA license.
To obtain a license, companies must fully support all stablecoins in circulation with reserves equal to the face value, segregation and custody of reserve assets, disclosure, and regular reporting. They will also need to open an office in Hong Kong with a CEO, senior management team, and key personnel. However, Algorithmic Stablecoin Issuers will not be able to obtain a license.
“Implementing law enforcement and enforcement arrangements can properly manage the actual and potential risks associated with developing stablecoins in Hong Kong and be consistent with international standards.”
Hui Ching, Director of the Treasury Bureau
In May, Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Authority (SFC) decided to allow retail investors to trade cryptocurrencies officially. The SFC will enable retail investors to sell Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH), albeit subject to strict security measures. Cryptocurrencies must have no “bad incidents” for 12 months for retail trading. In addition, cryptocurrencies must be included in at least two indices.
In addition, in December, the SFC announced its readiness to accept applications to launch cryptocurrency ETFs. The joint statement emphasizes that the agencies have reviewed their existing rules and policies regarding companies and intermediaries wishing to participate in cryptocurrency.