Hong Kong’s Monetary Authority is to link 21 banks, including HSBC and Standard Chartered, through a blockchain-backed trade finance platform with the aim of upgrading the $9tn global trade finance industry according to FT.
“Instead of individual banks trying to do this you have the regulator trying to bring the banks together,” says Jessica Tan from the Chinese tech giant Ping An which designed the blockchain platform.
Details are very sparse, but Hong Kong is seemingly pioneering the deployment and utilization of blockchain tech, just a year after Singapore’s Monetary Authority tokenizing the dollar through ethereum’s blockchain last year.
The financial centre is in fierce competition with other trading hotspots in Asia, especially Tokyo, Seul and Singapore.
While crypto adoption in Seul however exploded, and to some extent in Tokyo too, we have heard little from the other two Asian tigers, perhaps until now.
A Hong Kong based crypto exchange, Coinsuper, rose to $1 billion in trading volumes during the past 24 hours.
“We build up ourself as the Asian Coinbase with only premium blockchain projects on our platform,” Yolanda Zhong from Coinsuper says. “Since our launch in Feb this year, we’ve already got over 1 million users in March.”
They have no HK dollar trading pairs, but Singaporean dollar will be added they tell us after the acquisition of Bcoin, a Singapore based exchange.
As we highlighted earlier, a number of crypto exchanges from Asia have suddenly made an appearance, effectively transforming the rankings by trading volumes.
Many are based in Singapore, but it is the Hong Kong based Coinsuper that might take the very top spot, above even Binance. Giving a brief overview of the exchange, Zhong says Coinsuper is:
“Driven by tradition financial institutions veterans, founded by a team of members from CEO is ex UBS(China) President, other core team members from J.P. Morgan and Citics Futures International, and tech team from Alibaba and Sohu; Compliance from HSBC.
Backed by some reputable accredited investors in both series A and series A+ , which including Pantera Capital and Breyer Labs.
A strong kick in the financial institutions adoption, we just acquired a Singpapore-based exchange – Bcoin, which means we’re going to have more market expansion to Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand.”
Trading volumes from new jurisdictions is one of the first indication that crypto adoption is growing in the country, but the picture is slightly bigger.
After China’s central bank banned crypto exchanges, it now seems some ten months later that the Chinese crypto networks have dispersed in the independent jurisdictions surrounding China.
Blockchain related talent and money has thus seemingly left mainland China for surrounding areas, with Asia based VCs funding all these new projects that are now starting to make some noise.
Take Pundi X. That’s an Indonesia based start-up looking to built a crypto Points of Sale (POS) network starting with Hong Kong where 5,500 units are expected to be rolled out by the end of August.
“Hong Kong is the perfect place for us to do a test drive before a large scale roll-out as there are many tourists, expats, and early tech adaptors,” Zac Cheah, co-founder and CEO of Pundi X, says.
From there, they hope to expand with a target of 100,000 such units by 2021 to be installed across Southeast Asia.
An area that China dominates, but perhaps not as much as we think. Bangkok is booming. Indonesia too. All of South East Asia is really growing considerably and it’s being transformed.
It’s no wonder thus so many projects are coming from there and at times take us very much by surprise as the crypto revolution continues to engulf the world round.