First batch of virtual banking licences granted in Hong Kong
The first batch of virtual banking licences was granted to three financial organizations here on Wednesday by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority.
The licences were granted to Livi VB Limited, SC Digital Solutions Limited and Zhong An Virtual Finance Limited. The banking licences took effect on Wednesday.
Norman Chan, chief executive of the HKMA, said that the introduction of virtual banks in Hong Kong is a key pillar supporting Hong Kong's entry into the smart banking era.
"It is a major milestone in reinforcing Hong Kong's position as a premier international financial center. I believe that virtual banks will not only help drive FinTech and innovation, but also bring about brand new customer experiences and further promote financial inclusion in Hong Kong," Chan said.
In targeting the retail public and small- and medium- enterprises as their main client base, virtual banks should help promote financial inclusion in Hong Kong, he added.
The three newly licenced virtual banks intended to launch their services within six to nine months, according to their business plans.
After the granting of the above banking licences, the number of licensed banks in Hong Kong will be increased to 155, the HKMA said.