Earlier this month, the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) announced that it will once again allow crypto trading for retail clients as of June 1. The decision comes after a consultation process with industry stakeholders during the period from 2021 when crypto trading was banned in China and Hong Kong.
Despite significant hype surrounding Hong Kong’s lifting of its crypto ban, so far only two crypto exchanges have been registered by the SFC — OSL Exchange and HashKey Pro. However, Huobi announced last week that it has applied with the SFC to offer its services in Hong Kong and OKX has revealed it will be offering crypto trading to Hong Kong residents via its app.
Binance has so far not announced that it intends to register with the SFC to offer its services in Hong Kong. The business closed shop in China in 2017 when crypto exchanges were banned.
Crypto will remain banned in mainland China, however, Hong Kong retains a separate legal system, despite recent developments that have seen China taking more control over the former British colony. These controls include the abolishing of certain speech and taking control of its parliament.
Over the years, pro-democracy politicians in Hong Kong have been barred from politics, jailed, and harassed while publishers have been jailed and newspapers shut down. Nevertheless, Hong Kong’s legal system makes it attractive for foreign direct investment, a fact that could explain why China has been so willing for Hong Kong to retain its status as a “special administrative region.”