Hong Kong SFC was Criticized for the Unclear Cryptocurrency Regulation
Hong Kong regulatory authorities emphasize that the virtual currency will be regulated as virtual “products” and remind local banks to pay attention to money laundering and terrorist financing in crypto-related financial activities. Of late, the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) has also halted an ICO (initial coin offering) activity as it may constitute a “collective investment scheme”.
However, according to orientaldaily, people from all walks of life are not satisfied with the financial authorities on their work on cryptocurrency regulation. The information technology community admits that the authorities need to make their attitude towards virtual currency regulation much clear.
Francis Fong, the honorary president of the Hong Kong Information Technology Federation, criticized the Hong Kong regulators for holding an ambiguous attitude towards virtual currency: on one hand, the government reminds the public that virtual currency is a high-risk investment activity; on the other hand, however, they refuse to clearly identify the market position of virtual currency to the public which is quite puzzled to the investors.
Fong indicated that, the financial authorities must conduct effective regulatory measures on cryptocurrency trading in order to protect the general investors. He commented that, the cross-sectoral collaboration is necessary in regulating cryptocurrency trading.
Some fund managers also pointed out that, since the ban on cryptocurrency transactions took place in the Mainland China, some of the crypto transactions have been transferred and processed in Hong Kong and Singapore, which results in a sharp increase in transaction volume within the two places.
Although the licensing sector of Hong Kong SFC is willing to participate in virtual currency investments, before the SFC officially launching a “no objection notification”, majority of the licensed financial institutions prefer not to participate in the cryptocurency trading activities.