Etelka Bogardi (HK)

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The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) has recently (18 July 2018) released its final Open API Framework. The formulation of the Open API Framework is one of the seven initiatives announced by the HKMA in September 2017 to facilitate the move into a new era of Smart Banking. The framework sets out a phased approach to implementation, it currently covers “read-only” data such as product and service information, with plans to roll out API…
‘Best Practices for Digital Asset Exchanges’ is a first-of its kind report released by ASIFMA, the region’s leading trade association for the financial industry. The report aims to guide digital exchanges towards international best practices and highlights key areas for consideration, including the listing processes, market abuse issues, regulatory considerations, cybersecurity and engagement with external stakeholders. We are delighted to have assisted ASIFMA with the preparation of this report. We trust that these recommendations are…
Following a public consultation, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) published a revised Guideline on Authorization of Virtual Banks (the Guideline) on 30 May 2018. The Guideline supersedes the previous guideline issued in 2000 (and updated in 2012). Our blog entry dated 4 March 2018 which provides details of the public consultation can be found here. In general, the consultation did not result in major policy shifts, but it indicated areas where clarification and…
The Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) published its consultation conclusion on 23 May 2018 in relation to the proposed disclosure requirements for intermediaries providing discretionary account management services (Discretionary Account Managers). This consultation conclusion has been released in connection with the consultation on this topic issued by the SFC in November 20171. In view of the common practice resulting in some Discretionary Account Managers and/or their associates receiving benefits from product issuers and making trading…
An investigation by Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) has led to the halt and unwinding of an initial coin offering (ICO) by Black Cell Technology Limited (Black Cell) to the Hong Kong public on the basis that Black Cell potentially engaged in unauthorized promotional and unlicensed regulated activities. Black Cell promoted the token sale through its website and stated that the ICO proceeds would be used to fund the developments of a mobile…
In September 2017, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) launched seven initiatives aimed at creating a “new era of smart banking”. The HKMA has recently published consultation papers relating to two of these. Firstly, on 11 January 2018, the HKMA launched an industry consultation setting out its planned approach to Open Application Programming Interfaces (Open API), and secondly on 6 February 2018, the HKMA published revised guidelines on the authorization of virtual banks for public…
On 5 January 2018, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) issued a circular setting out guidance relating to the implementation of changes to the paragraphs of the Code of Conduct for Persons Licensed by or Registered with the SFC (Code) relating to: (i) ‘Disclosure of monetary and non-monetary benefits’ (paragraph 8.3), and (ii) ‘Independence’ (paragraph 10.2) (the New Circular). The Code changes will become effective on 17 August 2018. The Securities and Futures Commission published…
On 12 December 2017, the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) issued an updated guidance note regarding the benefits of cooperating on its investigations and enforcement proceedings (Guidance Note). The SFC also published a new set of Frequently Asked Questions to supplement the Guidance Note (FAQs). As noted in the FAQs, one of the key changes in the Guidance Note is the inclusion of an updated section on disciplinary matters. In particular, the SFC has divided…
On 24 November 2017, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) and the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) issued a joint circular on the results of their joint review on the potential conflicts of interest which may arise from the sale of in-house products by licensed corporations and registered institutions (collectively, intermediaries) within a single financial group. The circular focuses on internal controls and compliance and aims to provide the basis for unified regulatory standards for…
The Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) and the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) are increasingly focused on cyber security in light of the threat posed to the integrity, efficiency and soundness of financial markets by cyber threats and hacks. On 27 October 2017, the SFC issued new Guidelines for Reducing and Mitigating Hacking Risks Associated with Internet Trading (Guidelines). The Guidelines set out 20 minimum requirements aimed at enhancing cyber security and reducing the risks…