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Hong Kong grants its first retail crypto trading license to this local exchange

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Hong Kong’s financial regulator has granted retail crypto trading license to a local crypto asset firm.

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  • The firm has already been offering its crypto trading services to professional investors.
  • HashKey is the first crypto exchange in Hong Kong to provide crypto retail trading.

On 3 August, Hong Kong awarded retail crypto trading license to a local crypto asset firm known as HashKey.


The firm has been offering its crypto trading services to professional investors. With the latest license, it can provide those services to retail investors also.

The Securities and Futures Commission (SFC), Hong Kong’s financial regulator, has authorized HashKey’s two licenses. The first license, Type 1, permits HashKey to run a crypto asset trading platform in accordance with the local securities laws. The second one, Type 7, permits the exchange to offer automated trading services to both institutional and retail investors.

HashKey was the first crypto exchange in Hong Kong to provide crypto retail trading as the city strives to become a global hub for the crypto asset industry.

HashKey has teamed with Standard Chartered Bank to offer fiat cash deposit and withdrawal services to its consumers. Retail investors can only trade major cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum.

HashKey has also introduced HashKey Brokerage, its over-the-counter (OTC) crypto trading service. Following the SFC’s acceptance of a new crypto regulatory framework, the OTC platform is believed to conform with local securities regulations.

Hong Kong implemented its crypto trading framework in June. The directive is a part of an effort to establish the city as a leading financial center in the world. But the city has not yet received any huge investments in crypto ventures.

HashKey and its competitor, OSL, were the only two crypto exchanges granted permission under Hong Kong’s older voluntary licensing program.

Crypto companies heading to Asia?

The crypto sector is now looking towards Asia for expansion opportunities as the many jurisdictions in the region have specified crypto regulations. Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and South Korea are the major regions vying to invite crypto ventures.

The crypto industry in the U.S. is facing a number of challenges now, such as ambiguous court rulings, a turf war between regulatory bodies like the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), and political conflicts over proposed crypto regulations.


Saman Waris works as a News Editor at AMBCrypto. She has always been fascinated by how the tides of finance and technology shape communities across demographics. Cryptocurrencies are of particular interest to Saman, with much of her writing centered around understanding how ideas like Momentum and Greater Fool theories apply to altcoins, specifically, memecoins. A graduate in history, Saman worked the sports beat before diving into crypto. Prior to joining AMBCrypto 2 years ago, Saman was a News Editor at Sportskeeda. This was preceded by her stint as Editor-in-Chief at EssentiallySports.
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