WSJ: At least two Hong Kong banks have denied services to cryptocurrency companies
At least two Hong Kong banks have denied services to cryptocurrency companies - WSJ
Hong Kong banks fear cryptocurrencies could be used for money laundering
At least two global banks operating in Hong Kong have refused to provide any services related to cryptocurrencies, while a number of others have banned cryptocurrency exchange customers from opening accounts with them, the Wall Street Journal reported.
The situation for cryptocurrency exchanges has not been the best lately, although the Hong Kong authorities have taken a number of measures to develop the crypto industry, the publication writes. In particular, a multi-year ban on cryptocurrency trading for retail investors was lifted and a new licensing regime for crypto exchanges was introduced.
As explained by one of the partners of the law firm Clifford Chance, financial organizations in Hong Kong fear that cryptocurrencies can be used for money laundering.
At the same time, the interlocutor of the publication from the Hong Kong Monetary Authority specified that banks can not refuse to open an account for a company just because of the sector in which it operates. He believes that banks should try to meet the legitimate business needs of licensed crypto exchanges in the broader sector of virtual assets.
Another interlocutor confirmed that one major international bank, on the contrary, has changed its stance and is willing to open basic accounts for crypto exchanges that have applied for licensing, given traditional practices to prevent money laundering.
In late June, the Hong Kong unit of British bank HSBC allowed customers to trade units of cryptocurrency ETFs. The purchase of securities of four cryptocurrency exchange-traded funds will be available to users through official trading applications.
In July, Hong Kong authorities proposed to launch its own "stablecoin" HKDG backed by the jurisdiction's foreign exchange reserves to compete with market giants USDT and USDC.
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