OKX Withdraws Hong Kong VASP License Application

As a researcher with experience in the cryptocurrency industry, I find OKX’s decision to withdraw its application for a virtual asset service provider (VASP) license in Hong Kong concerning. The exchange, which ranks among the top three by traded volume, had initially applied for the license on November 16, 2022. However, they chose to withdraw their application without providing any clear reason for the decision.

As a cryptocurrency market analyst, I can share that OKX, a prominent cryptocurrency exchange platform, recently disclosed that they have retracted their application for providing digital asset-related services in Hong Kong.

After deliberating over our business strategy, we have made the decision to withdraw the VASP license application for OKX HK.

As a researcher studying the financial market, I’ve come across an announcement from The Exchange, which currently holds the third-largest trading volume. They have revealed that they will no longer provide centralized virtual asset trading services in this region starting from May 31st. Consequently, customers will be restricted to withdrawing their funds only.

Beginning on May 31, Hong Kong users can only make withdrawals from their accounts up until August 31. Any unclaimed balances following this date will be classified as “abandoned property.” Despite previous guarantees regarding the security of consumer funds, open orders and deposits placed after a certain deadline may not be promptly refunded.

According to the SFC’s announcement on their website, OKX withdrew their application on November 16th for registration as a Virtual Asset Service Provider (VASP). The reasons behind this decision were not disclosed by OKX.

If you’re using a virtual asset trading platform based in Hong Kong, be aware that you need to submit your licensing application to the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) by February 29, 2024, at the latest. Failure to do so will result in the platform halting operations in Hong Kong by May 31, 2024. Investors are encouraged to plan ahead and take action accordingly.

As a crypto investor, I received an update from the exchange about the recent issue they encountered. Despite the disruption to their centralized services, I was reassured that I could still use their self-custodial OKX Web3 wallet independently. This wallet is a local solution and remained unaffected by the exchange’s ongoing issues.

Beginning in June 2023, Hong Kong’s Legislative Council enforced a new regulatory framework for Bitcoin-related businesses that had been established the previous December in 2022.

Among several international exchanges, OKX was one of them who put in an application for the required licenses. However, OKX, together with Gate.io, HKVAEX, and Huobi HK, chose to withdraw their applications.

In January, OKX acquired a VASP license in Dubai, enabling them to expand their services to new markets, specifically in Australia and Turkey.

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2024-05-24 18:29