Hong Kong Monetary Authority: Eight virtual banking licenses have been issued, Hong Kong's first virtual bank is expected to open for trial by the end of the year

Author: Reporter Luo Shu Yi in Beijing

Source: Economic Reference

Recently, Yu Weiwen, the new president of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (hereinafter referred to as the "Hong Kong Monetary Authority") said in an interview with reporters that the Hong Kong Monetary Authority has issued eight virtual banking licenses, and Hong Kong's first virtual bank is expected to start trial operations at the end of the year. In addition to banking services, the application of blockchain technology in trade finance, cross-border payments, and regulatory technology is also the focus of Hong Kong's fintech development in the future.

Yu Weiwen pointed out that, in general, Hong Kong's fintech development has been very rapid in the past three years. In terms of banking services, the use of fintech in banking services will be further broadened, scene landing and differentiation will be promoted, and more technological means such as fintech, artificial intelligence and big data will be used.

The application of virtual banking is one of them. Since March 27 this year, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority has issued eight virtual banking licenses, including LiviVBLimited (a joint venture between BOC Hong Kong and JD.com), Zhongan Virtual Finance Co., Ltd., a subsidiary of Zhongan Online, and Ant Merchant Services (Hong Kong). Co., Ltd. (affiliated with Ant Financial Services), Ping An One Account Co., Ltd., etc. Yu Weiwen said that the first virtual bank in Hong Kong is expected to start trial operation at the end of this year.

"The competition between virtual banks and traditional banks has brought technological innovation and improved services. Although virtual banks do not have physical branches and provide services through the Internet, they still pose certain challenges to Hong Kong's traditional banking business." Yu Weiwen said that the launch of virtual banks The purpose is still to serve customers, so that bank customers can enjoy the services cheaper and more conveniently. Inclusive finance should also become one of the goals of the development of virtual banks, such as innovation in SME loans.

The application of blockchain in Hong Kong is a highlight of Hong Kong's fintech development. Yu Weiwen said that the use of blockchain technology in trade financing and cross-border payments will continue to be strengthened in the future. He said, "Blockchain technology can effectively ensure the authenticity of trade documents and the validity of corporate information, thereby facilitating the financial identification of SMEs by banks and other financial institutions, and better helping high-quality SMEs to obtain corresponding trade financing. "

Earlier, a subsidiary of Hong Kong Interbank Clearing Co., Ltd. and a subordinate institution of the Digital Currency Research Institute of the People's Bank of China signed a Memorandum of Understanding aimed at connecting the blockchain-based trade financing platform with the People's Bank of China's trade finance platform. Began in the first quarter of 2020. After the completion of the docking, more convenient trade financing services will be provided for enterprises in the two places.

In terms of cross-border payment, Yu Weiwen pointed out that current cross-border payment has high cost and low efficiency. Blockchain technology and central bank digital currency will help solve this problem. Yu Weiwen also pointed out the importance of compliance technology and regulatory technology. "Supervision must catch up with the technological development of banks." He said that banks and supervisory authorities can use technology to achieve the capture and monitoring of reported data, thereby effectively improving the efficiency of the operation of supervisory authorities. In addition, continuous efforts are needed to ensure the security of financial data.