Hong Kong issues four more virtual bank licenses

Hong Kong’s monetary authority has issued four virtual banking licenses to applicants affiliated with a trio of China’s largest technology companies as well as the city’s stock exchange, in a move to speed up disruption and innovation in one of the world’s best served financial centers, reports the SCMP.

The four new licenses have gone to Ping An Insurance’s subsidiary Ping An OneConnect, Ant Financial Services’ unit Ant SME Services, a Xiaomi-AMTD Group venture called Insight Fintech HK, and the Infinium consortium that includes Tencent Holdings, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), and Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing (HKEX). 

The latest permits add to the four that the monetary authority (HKMA) has already issued since March to spur competition and innovation. 

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