Swiss SEBA Bank gets approval-in-principle for Hong Kong crypto services

By Georgina Lee

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Swiss crypto-focused SEBA Bank on Wednesday said it has received an approval-in-principle from Hong Kong’s securities regulator that takes it only one step away from offering virtual asset services in the Asian financial hub.

SEBA (Hong Kong), in a statement, said the Securities and Futures Commission will grant licences once it meets conditions for final approval. It will then be able to engage in securities dealing, including crypto-related structured products, and advise on and manage digital assets and traditional securities.

    The development comes after the city introduced a framework in June aimed at regulating retail cryptocurrency trade and which requires crypto trading platforms and exchanges to obtain licences.

The framework came after a year of turmoil in cryptocurrencies including the collapse of exchange FTX.

Hong Kong is the third market in which the Zug-headquartered bank has sought a licence after Switzerland and Abu Dhabi. The approval-in-principle allows SEBA to prepare for operations as soon as it is licensed.

(Reporting by Georgina Lee; Editing by Christopher Cushing)