Jeremy Allaire – co-founder and CEO of the stablecoin-issuer Circle – said his company has been closely observing the regulatory developments in Hong Kong.
The authorities of the former British colony have recently allowed investors to trade cryptocurrency under a new regime as they carry “fundamental value.”
Asia is a ‘Huge Area of Focus’
In a recent interview for Bloomberg, Allaire noted Hong Kong’s efforts to establish itself as a “very significant center for digital markets and for stablecoins.” As such, Circle is paying “very close attention to that,” he added.
The executive sees Asia as an important region for the industry. Recall that Circle received regulatory approval from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) in November last year. The license enabled the firm to offer digital payment token products and conduct cross-border and local transactions in the city-state.
The ruling body of Hong Kong has shown a pro-crypto stance lately, introducing a regulatory framework for the sector at the beginning of the month. According to the new rules, digital asset providers can offer services to retail clients, assuming disclaimers of the possible investment risks are in place.
Some suggested that Hong Kong’s positive approach could signal that China might start warming up to the industry. The government of the world’s most populated country banned all crypto-related activities on its territory in 2021.
Moreover, the subsidiaries of some of the largest Chinese banking institutions, including the Bank of Communications, the Bank of China, and Shanghai Pudong Development Bank, have supposedly supported crypto companies based in Hong Kong.
“What’s happening in Hong Kong may be a proxy for ultimately how do these markets grow in Greater China,” Allaire concluded.
Hong Kong Said ‘Yes’ to Crypto ETFs
Besides implementing cryptocurrency rules, Hong Kong recently jumped on the cryptocurrency ETF bandwagon. Earlier this week, Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) – the largest domestic bank – enabled clients to buy and sell Bitcoin and Ethereum exchange-traded funds.
The approved products include CSOP Bitcoin Futures ETF, CSOP Ethereum Futures, and Samsung Bitcoin Futures Active ETF.
In addition, the bank launched an educational program called the Virtual Asset Investor Education Centre, whose goal is to tutor investors for the risks they might encounter when joining the ecosystem.
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