Hong Kong to name all crypto license applicants following JPEX scandal

September 25, 2023 06:00 PM AEST | By Invezz
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Hong Kong’s Securities & Futures Commission (SFC) continues to scrutinize the crypto market to fight unregistered virtual asset trading platforms in the region.

On Monday, 25 September, the watchdog vowed to reveal all certified trading platforms to help users identify unregistered cryptocurrency firms in Hong Kong. Further, the SFC will offer more info about the illegal VATPs to ensure timely alerts to investors.

The latest actions follow the JPEX investigation, which has seen many arrested in the jurisdiction. The regulators alleged that the cryptocurrency exchange promoted its offerings without a license.

“The JPEX incident highlights the risks of dealing with unregulated VATPs and the need for proper regulation to maintain market confidence.”

Hong Kong police revealed that the masterminds behind the JPEX scandal remain at large despite 11 individuals, including cryptocurrency influencer Joseph Lam, being arrested in connection with the case.

Police have received around 2,270 complaints from individuals who suffered from the exchange’s fraud, with losses of approximately 1.4B Hong Kong dollars ($178 million). Most users report challenges in withdrawing digital assets from the firm. Further, JPEX increased withdrawals charges to 999 Tether (USDT) on 15 September.

SFC’s U-turn

The latest decision to list platforms that have applied for licenses in Hong Kong comes as a U-turn from the watchdog. Last week, SFC stated that such a move might mislead investors as it will create a false notion of safety. It explained that market players might perceive all named platforms as licensed by the authority.

Wong Lok-yan, SFC licensing director, confirmed that public demand prompted the U-turn. He stated that the list will evaluate “whether virtual asset trading platforms (VATPs) out there are misrepresenting the licensing status.”

The current list contains four operators, and JPEX isn’t among them.

The post Hong Kong to name all crypto license applicants following JPEX scandal appeared first on Invezz.


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