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February 2022

Hong Kong’s metaverse ETF; Metaverse dating on the Moon

Hong Kong prepares to launch metaverse ETF, while India tries metaverse dating on the Moon.

Hong Kong gears up for its first metaverse ETF

Hong Kong’s first metaverse-themed exchange-traded fund (ETF), the CSOP Metaverse Concept ETF, is scheduled to be listed on Feb. 21 on the Stock Exchange of Hong Kong, according to a CSOP Asset Management disclosure document.  See related article: NFTs, metaverse listed as top ‘must watch’ security risks in Hong Kong Fast facts The metaverse ETF […]

Hong Kong makes apt testbed for e-CNY cross-border use

The city’s global reach, Hong Kong dollar and mainland ties make it a good fit for Chinese authorities to trial e-CNY international payments.

Prime time for crypto as Super Bowl ads make splash

Top blockchain and crypto news: Super Bowl score for digital asset exchanges. CryptoPunks holders face copyright conundrum. Hong Kong warns of NFT risks.

Hong Kong’s Ocean Park brings virtual attractions to The Sandbox metaverse

Hong Kong’s Ocean Park announced on Monday that it is entering The Sandbox metaverse to offer virtual experiences through non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and gaming, as visitors to its physical venue dropped throughout the pandemic.  Fast facts The government proposed last January that it will transform the physical theme park into a resort and leisure destination […]

NFTs, metaverse listed as top ‘must watch’ security risks in Hong Kong

A Hong Kong government-run internet security watchdog has listed risks associated with non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and the metaverse as a top “must watch” security threat this year, while both trends continue to thrive in the city. Fast facts The Hong Kong Computer Emergency Response Team Coordination Centre said in a statement last week that criminals […]

Phillips to auction metahuman-made NFTs for Valentine’s Day

Phillips, a global auction house, launched a nine-day non-fungible token (NFT) auction on Monday, Valentine’s Day, in Hong Kong. Fast facts Six artworks are being auctioned as NFTs. One NFT for bidding is an auction data-generated NFT “Drowning in Love” made by MonoC, a virtual artist developed by Gusto Collective. MonoC is a virtual metahuman […]

China’s e-CNY pilot to boost Hong Kong as offshore yuan trading center

Upcoming digital yuan trial to piggyback on Hong Kong’s popular Faster Payment System for smoother cross-border transactions.

Hong Kong to propose bill to license crypto exchanges

The Hong Kong government intends to propose a licensing system for crypto exchanges, according to a discussion paper published on Monday. Fast facts The proposed amendments to the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing bill will designate any crypto exchange as a “regulated virtual asset activity” and any person who seeks to engage in this work […]

January 2022

Hong Kong retail investors blocked from Bitcoin spot ETFs

Hong Kong’s financial regulators released new guidelines on Friday that restrict retail investor access to financial products that invest directly in digital assets. Fast facts In a joint circular released by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) and the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), the regulators placed sales restrictions on non-derivative products such as crypto […]

Hong Kong to pilot international trade settlement for mBridge this year

Hong Kong’s central bank digital currency (CBDC) project with three other central banks and the Bank of International Settlements (BIS) will enter its pilot stage this year to test international trade settlements, a Hong Kong government official said. Fast facts Christopher Hui, Hong Kong’s Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury, said on Wednesday the […]

BIS to study DeFi for SME financing in Hong Kong

The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) Innovation Hub announced on Tuesday that its Hong Kong Center will explore this year whether decentralized finance (DeFi) can improve financing for small and medium enterprises. Fast facts In Hong Kong, the BIS has been working with central banks of China, Hong Kong, United Arab Emirates and Thailand on […]

Hong Kong outlines stablecoin regulation plan to check financial stability risks

Stablecoins and CBDCs will likely co-exist in the city, experts say, as Hong Kong looks to thrive as crypto hub.

Korean prosecutors demand life; HK plans new crypto regulation

Korean prosecutors demand life, as HK plans new crypto regulation.

The Sandbox metaverse names Mega City project partners

Gaming metaverse the Sandbox announced the partners for its upcoming Hong Kong-influenced virtual cultural hub.

December 2021

Hackers infiltrate Monkey Kingdom NFT community, steal US$1.3M

Hackers scam 7,000 Solana, or US$1.3 million, from would-be buyers of a new NFT collection of the Monkey Kingdom project.

Hong Kong-based Brinc closes $130M funding led by Animoca Brands to fuel Web 3.0 growth

Brinc, a Hong Kong-headquartered venture capital focused on Web 3.0, today announced that it has secured US$30 million in a Series B round and an additional US$100 million for startup investments. The funding was led by Animoca Brands — a Hong Kong-based blockchain gaming, metaverse and non-fungible token (NFT) company — to further fuel Brinc’s investment in […]

US SPAC’s refusal to merge with Hong Kong crypto firms raises questions

Crypto 1 will consider acquisition targets worldwide but steer clear of digital assets companies in China and Hong Kong. Are the lights dimming on a major crypto hub?

US SPAC Crypto 1 closes IPO, says won’t pursue ‘business combinations’ with any Hong Kong crypto firms

Crypto 1 Acquisition Corp., a U.S.-incorporated blank check company, has completed its initial public offering (IPO) with gross proceeds of US$230 million, according to a company statement released Friday. Fast facts The company’s units commenced trading on the Nasdaq Global Market under the ticker symbol “DAOOU” on Dec. 7. Acting as a special purpose acquisition […]

In Hong Kong, a look at how the blockchain revolution in gaming continues

Gamers and developers gather at the annual Digital Entertainment Leadership Forum to discuss how video games may evolve in the future.

Horses are joining humans as metaverse pilgrims

Blockchain gaming unicorn Animoca Brands announced yesterday a partnership with Aquis Farm — a major racehorse-breeding business owned by Hong Kong’s billionaire Fung family — to bring equestrian activities into the metaverse. The blockchain specialist will leverage Aquis Farm’s equestrian intellectual properties to develop blockchain games and non-fungible tokens (NFTs).  Fast facts “Aquis recognises the […]

Hong Kong VC firm Chiron Partners raises $50M to back Terra

Hong Kong-based venture capital (VC) firm Chiron Partners announced Wednesday the launch of a US$50 million fund to support the Terra blockchain ecosystem. Fast facts Chiron Partners will use the fund, namely the Chiron Terra Fund I (CTI), to invest in innovative projects built on the Terra ecosystem, such as decentralized finance (DeFi) applications and […]

Hong Kong sees high engagement with crypto, Visa research shows

A new survey published Wednesday by Visa shows that 18% of Hong Kong residents are active cryptocurrency investors, while 13% are passive investors, representing the second-highest engagement with crypto just after the U.S. Fast facts The survey collected 6,430 online responses from Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Germany, Hong Kong, South Africa, the U.S., and the U.K. […]

China’s PBOC wants to link e-CNY with Hong Kong’s Faster Payment System

Mu Changchun, director-general of the People’s Bank of China’s digital currency institute, said today the central bank is working with the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) to test cross-border payment features for the e-CNY, China’s much anticipated central bank digital currency (CBDC). Fast facts Mu said at a webinar, jointly organized by the PBOC and […]
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November 2021

Huobi Brokerage launches crypto lending for institutions

Hong Kong Stock Exchange-listed Huobi Technology Holdings today announced that it will be launching Huobi Lending, a cryptocurrency lending service for institutions and high net worth individuals (HNWI) through its new digital asset brokerage platform Huobi Brokerage, according to a company announcement. Fast facts Alongside growing institutional interest in digital assets, crypto lending services leveraging […]

Hong Kong metaverse developer ViLab partners with Squid Game special effects maker

Hong Kong-based ViLab Limited, a metaverse developer, announced today that it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Gulliver Studios, the effects creator behind the Netflix hit series Squid Game, to develop technology that can be used for creating virtual identities and other features for the metaverse. Fast facts ViLab and Gulliver Studios will […]

A crypto trader is rescued after being kidnapped by local gang for six days

A crypto investor in Hong Kong was rescued six days after being kidnapped earlier this month when he tried to meet a buyer offline who promised to purchase his Tether tokens.

Hong Kong’s First Digital Trust to custody security tokens on IX Swap

First Digital Trust, a Hong Kong-regulated trust and custodian specializing in digital assets, has become the first official custodian of IX Swap, a security token and cryptocurrency exchange, according to a company announcement today. Fast facts IX Swap is a decentralized finance (DeFi) automated market maker and liquidity pool for security tokens and tokenized stocks. […]

New Hong Kong youth association hopes to nurture ‘patriotic fintech talents’

The city’s disaffected post-protest youth and recent statistics suggest a brain drain in the city’s future.

Hong Kong Fintech Week’s live comeback talks digital renminbi and DeFi

One of Asia’s largest fintech events returns for its sixth year with a hybrid format of live and virtual sessions. Regulators, corporations and experts share what’s important now in crypto.

Back up Hong Kong: How blockchain has quietly become history’s hard drive

In a city where memories disappear every day, people are turning to blockchain to preserve news archives — so the first drafts of history will survive.

Hong Kong’s CMCC seeks to raise $300 million crypto fund

CMCC Global, a venture capital firm based in Hong Kong, is targeting US$300 million worth of assets in its latest crypto fund, according to Bloomberg. Fast facts Since being launched in April, CMCC’s fourth digital asset fund has gathered assets close to an estimated value of US$90 million with a goal to reach the US$300 […]

October 2021

How Singapore is emerging as a safe harbor for the Chinese crypto industry exodus

As China intensifies its crypto crackdown, regulatory clarity is a beacon for safer shores in Southeast Asia.

What is Hong Kong’s future as a crypto hub?

Hong Kong, a hotbed for crypto startups and exchanges, is at a crossroads, writes Jeremy Ng of Gemini. Here’s how the industry can better secure its future.

Hong Kong issues technical white paper on e-HKD

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) on Monday released a white paper proposing potential technical architecture and design for the infrastructure of a digital Hong Kong dollar. The paper is one of the deliverables described in Project e-HKD, a feasibility study the HKMA announced in June 2021. Fast facts Hong Kong began its exploration of […]

September 2021

Former Hong Kong news site issues NFTs to preserve history

Initium Media, also known as 端傳媒, is turning to blockchain technology to grow revenue and to ensure controversial news does not get forgotten — or tampered with.

Bitcoin price plunges; Metaverse actions heats up in China

Bitcoin price plunges however Metaverse actions heats up in China

El Salvador’s big Bitcoin bet. Kim Kardashian, crypto flirt. Hong Kong’s crackdown warning.

Top blockchain and cryptocurrency news: El Salvador’s BTC experiment. EthereumMax and the power of celebrity. Hong Kong shores up regulatory oversight.

Hong Kong regulator: ramp up oversight of virtual assets

An official from Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission said on Tuesday that the regulator wants to increase oversight of virtual assets because scams related to them have emerged in the market, according to a report by local media etnet. Fast facts Julia Leung, deputy chief executive officer at SFC, said Tuesday at a webinar […]

August 2021

Hong Kong regulator warns investors against digital tokens and ICOs

Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission on Monday warned that digital tokens and initial coin offerings (ICOs) could be involved in unauthorized collective investment schemes (CIS) and urged investors to exercise extreme caution. Fast facts The SFC’s warning comes as the regulator added two property-related CIS investment projects and the “LABS Security Token” to its […]

Korea reveals crypto exchange ‘Death Note’: DeFi investment booms

Korea reveals crypto exchange ‘Death Note’: DeFi investment booms

BIS, HKMA partner on Project Genesis to tokenize green bonds

The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) Innovation Hub Hong Kong Centre and the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) are collaborating on Project Genesis — a green finance project for the tokenization of green bonds using blockchain technology, according to a BIS statement. Fast facts Project Genesis — the BIS Innovation Hub’s first green finance project […]

Hong Kong’s Resources Capital Football Club kicks off NFT goals

The team joins a growing number of football clubs around the world launching non-fungible tokens (NFTs) as they look to engage fans and generate new revenue streams.

BIT Mining revenue soars despite losses from operational pivot

Operating costs and crypto bear market suck up cash after former lottery operator bets on digital assets

Hong Kong artists embrace NFTs as OpenSea trading volume explodes

Despite speculation that the NFT market is cooling, OpenSea continues to post record transaction volumes, and Hong Kong artists are getting in on the action.

What is the regulatory outlook for virtual asset exchanges in Hong Kong and Singapore?

Singapore and Hong Kong are at the forefront of regulations over crypto exchanges, writes Vince Turcotte of Eventus Systems. Here’s why trade surveillance and risk management will be critical.

Binance winds down derivatives trading in Hong Kong

Binance — the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume — today announced that it will be restricting the use of its derivatives products for customers from Hong Kong. Fast facts Hong Kong customers will, with immediate effect, not be able to open new Binance deriviative product accounts, according to a Binance announcement posted at […]

Rothschild’s RIT Capital leads funding round for Aspen Digital to provide crypto services for institutional investors

Hong Kong-based Aspen Digital, a digital asset management platform for institutional investors, announced on Wednesday that it has secured US$8.8 million in pre-A funding to develop a one-stop shop for asset managers to invest in digital assets and manage their clients’ portfolios. Fast facts The funding round was led by RIT Capital Partners, the London-based […]

Crypto crimes surge to record levels in Hong Kong

Crypto-related crime has hit record levels in Hong Kong for the first six months of this year, with one victim losing HK$124 million (US$15.95 million) to fraudsters, according to the South China Morning Post. Fast facts Hong Kong police recorded 496 such cases totaling HK$214.4 million (US$27.58 million) in just the first half of this […]

July 2021

Huobi’s stock plunges in Hong Kong as it shuts Beijing unit

Closure of blockchain business may be related to regulatory concerns, but unlikely to hit crypto industry hard, observers say.

Hong Kong’s South China Morning Post to make NFTs to preserve history

Hong Kong newspaper the South China Morning Post is making a foray into the world of non-fungible tokens in the latest move by a Hong Kong publisher to preserve content through blockchain technology. Fast facts The SCMP today released its “ARTIFACT” lite paper, a project designed to advocate “a standardized metadata structure for recording accounts […]

Hong Kong raid uncovers suspected US$155M crypto laundering scheme

Tether stablecoins linked to funds funneled to banks in Singapore and elsewhere amid worldwide cryptocurrency crime increase.

BIS: cooperation essential for CBDCs to improve cross-border payments

In a new report, BIS says countries must work together and design CBDCs with interoperability in mind. Hong Kong and Singapore lead mCBDC efforts.

Hong Kong manga finds virtual home on blockchain as authorities silence publishers

NFTs offer haven as authors self-censor amid intensifying crackdown on free expression.

June 2021

Hong Kong’s Cyberport invests in digital asset custodian Hex Trust

Hex Trust, a Hong Kong-based digital asset custodian, today announced that it has secured investment from Cyberport, a technology incubator project backed by the Hong Kong government.

Hong Kong to press ahead with digital dollar, e-CNY plans

Hong Kong’s financial secretary has reiterated the city’s determination to develop digital versions of the Hong Kong dollar and the mainland Chinese yuan.

Following forced closure, Hong Kong’s Apple Daily preserved on blockchain

A tech-savvy activist is using blockchain technology to preserve content from Hong Kong’s Apple Daily, which was yesterday forced by the government to shut down.

Blockchain-powered air quality sensor test launches in Hong Kong

France-based PlanetWatch, which records air quality data on Algorand’s blockchain, has launched its first test sensor in Hong Kong.

ConsenSys, Hong Kong university launch Ethereum-powered Covid passport

The Chinese University of Hong Kong and Ethereum software company ConsenSys today announced the launch of a Covid-19 digital health passport.

Singapore’s GIC takes 8% stake in HK’s digital asset company BC Group

GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, is investing in BC Group—the parent company of OSL, Hong Kong’s first licensed cryptocurrency exchange.

Asian crypto exchange Kikitrade wins funds from UK billionaire Alan Howard

Kikitrade today announced a US$12 million fund raise with investment from British hedge fund billionaire Alan Howard to accelerate its growth.

Hong Kong eyes CBDC; Aussie Millennials favor crypto vs. real estate | The Daily Forkast

Hong Kong looks to explore CBDC feasibility as Australian millennials favor investing in crypto over traditional assets.

Hong Kong eyes digital currency as part of new fintech plan

Hong Kong will be initiating a study on a digital Hong Kong dollar as part of its plans to “future proof” the city for central bank digital currencies.

How NFTs are redrawing Asia’s art scene from artists to galleries

From Phillips auction house in Hong Kong to Art Fair Philippines, non-fungible tokens are redefining how Asia appreciates, buys and profits from art.

Take that, Miami: Hong Kong hosts its own Bitcoin meet-up

As 50,000 Bitcoiners and crypto superstars whoop it up at Miami’s Bitcoin 2021 fest, a smaller group of BTC fans hold their own at the Fringe in Hong Kong.

May 2021

Hong Kong crypto exchanges seek to wash hands of dirty power problem

Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchange Crypto.com has announced that it is committed to becoming carbon-negative within 18 months, following carbon-neutral initiatives launched by other Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchanges FTX and BitMEX.

Hong Kong treasury chief says new rules will boost crypto despite investment threshold

A proper regulatory system for cryptocurrencies and virtual assets can facilitate development, protect investors, and adhere to international regulatory standards, says treasury chief Christopher Hui

China crypto crackdown fallout; Politician turns influencer in Korea | The Daily Forkast

China’s miners prepare for migration and Hong Kong reacts to possible retail ban. Meanwhile a South Korean governor becomes a crypto influencer.

What will happen if Hong Kong bans retail investors from trading crypto?

Hong Kong is poised to ban small investors from buying cryptocurrencies, while making exchanges get licences. Industry experts discuss how this might play out. 
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Hong Kong split on retail crypto ban; Korean conglomerate on custody | The Daily Forkast

Hong Kong reacts to the region’s pending legislation on limiting crypto investment to professional investors while a conglomerate enters South Korea’s crypto custody scene.

Hong Kong to close crypto exchanges to all but ‘professional investors’

Cryptocurrency exchanges in Hong Kong will have to obtain licenses from the territory’s markets regulator and limit their service offerings to “professional investors”, according to the results of a consultation published today.

How S. Korea and Singapore are grappling with crypto investor protection

As retail interest in crypto grows, countries around the world are grappling with consumer protection. Asia offers a window into the array of policy responses.
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