A leading payments industry news source for more than 17 years. Glenbrook curates the news and keeps you abreast of the important daily headlines in payments.

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January 30, 2024

On the web

January 22, 2024

On the web

December 7, 2023

On the web

December 4, 2023

On the wires

November 2, 2023

On the web

September 26, 2023

On the web

mBridge CBDC Project Nearing Commercialization

Blockworks

"Eddie Yue, the CEO of Hong Kong’s central bank, expects that the mBridge CBDC project will gradually transition to commercialization. In a keynote speech at the 2023 Bund Summit, he detailed plans for the platform, which China, Thailand, Hong Kong and the United Arab Emirates are jointly developing in partnership with the Bank of International Settlements."

August 9, 2023

On the wires

UnionPay International Partners with Malaysian Payment Network PayNet to Promote Cross-Border QR Interoperability

PR Newswire

"Today, UnionPay International (UPI) and Payments Network Malaysia Sdn Bhd, or PayNet, Malaysia's national payments network jointly signed an agreement in Shanghai to promote the cross-border QR code linkage and enable the full acceptance of the UnionPay App (Chinese-mainland, Hong Kong and Macao versions) and Chinese-mainland bank apps connected to the UnionPay App Network Payment Platform at the QR merchants in Malaysia."

July 10, 2023

On the wires

Payment Asia Launches Hong Kong's First AI-Powered Processing Service to Promote ESG Awareness

PR Newswire

"Payment Asia, a leading payment solutions provider, has announced the launch of the first AI-powered comprehensive processing service, which includes automated merchant onboarding and assignment of merchant accounts, AI customer service, and an auto accounting system. This marks the first time such a comprehensive suite of automated services has been made available in Hong Kong together with AI development, taking merchants' sales to the next level....Payment Asia is also using ChatGPT, an AI natural language model, to embed in daily customer service, as a powerful tool to provide comprehensive answers in any field."

June 14, 2023

On the web

June 12, 2023

On the web

Policy Hong Kong Lawmaker Invites Coinbase to Apply to Operate in Region Amid U.S. SEC Crackdown

Coindesk

"A Hong Kong lawmaker invited global virtual asset trading operators, including crypto exchange Coinbase, to come and register in the region. A Hong Kong lawmaker invited global virtual asset trading operators, including crypto exchange Coinbase, to come and register in the region. Hong Kong's Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) began accepting applications for crypto trading platform licenses on June 1."

May 18, 2023

On the web

Hong Kong’s e-HKD Pilot Puts the World on Notice

Forkast

"In a major development for the rollout of central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) worldwide, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) announced the launch of an e-HKD pilot program Thursday, detailing the digital currency’s multiple potential use cases in payments and tokenized deposits. A number of major names from the financial, payment and tech industries will participate in the e-HKD (electronic Hong Kong dollar) pilot project as operational partners. These include state-owned Bank of China, China Construction Bank, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, HSBC and Standard Chartered Bank."

May 10, 2023

On the web

Hong Kong’s Crypto Market Will Not Have ‘Light-Touch Regulation’, HKMA Chief Says as City Prepares New Rules

South China Morning Post

"Hong Kong does not intend to have relaxed regulations on virtual assets as it seeks to become an international industry hub, a top official said in comments that come just weeks ahead of new licensing rules for crypto exchanges going into effect. “Our regulations will be tight,” Eddie Yue Wai-man, Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA), said at the Bloomberg Wealth Asia Summit on Tuesday."

April 18, 2023

On the web

Hong Kong Banks to Decide on CBDC Outlook

Coinspeaker

"Hong Kong has been frantically working toward launching its own central bank digital currency, the e-HKD, in 2023. However, a huge part of the plan is now up to the other banks, according to a CoinDesk report. The central bank of Hong Kong has charged other banks to come up with what they think the CBDC should look like. That is they must decide whether it will be fully centralized or decentralized."

March 6, 2023

On the wires

AsiaPay Launches Visa Instalments

PR Asia

"AsiaPay a leading provider of digital payment solutions in the Asia Pacific, has launched Visa Instalments in Hong Kong and will further extend to Southeast Asia to provide merchants more flexible payment options and enhance the purchase experience of consumers. Leading a new trend in credit card shopping, the launch of value-added service products, such as installment for consumers, not only greatly alleviates the pressure of their short-term capital, meets the consumption desire to buy, improves the quality of life, for businesses, improves the transaction flow, transaction volume, and commodity purchase conversion rate."

March 2, 2023

On the web

China's Digital Yuan Fails to Gain Traction with Hong Kong Visitors – Is China's Digital Currency Facing a Roadblock?

Cryptonews

"Shenzhen, China has initiated a scheme to promote the usage of its digital yuan among Hong Kong tourists by providing them with physical cards and discounts. However, the initial response during the first few days appears to have been lackluster. Per Shenzhen News, the country's first digital yuan hard wallet self-service card issuing machine was officially launched on February 22, providing "convenient" CBDC payment services for people coming to Shenzhen and Hong Kong."

December 21, 2022

On the web

Why the Fed Needs to Take the Digital Yuan Seriously

Bloomberg

“If the Federal Reserve still wants proof of China’s intention to challenge the dollar’s hegemony, it should look no further than a small experiment currently under way in Hong Kong. Last week, Bank of China (Hong Kong), one of the city’s big deposit-taking institutions, had its offer of 500 trial accounts tied to the e-CNY, the electronic version of official Chinese money, snapped up in two days. The customers are each being gifted 100 yuan in digital form, which they can spend at mainland stores, the JD.com website or a supermarket chain in Hong Kong.  (Subscription required)”

December 8, 2022

On the web

HSBC Unveils Metaverse Gallery to Support Local Artists

marketing-interactive

“HSBC has launched a metaverse gallery that offers an immersive online experience where art meets technology, aiming to inspire the Hong Kong public to embrace art and culture. Following in the footsteps of the partnership with M+ to contribute to Hong Kong’s arts and culture development, the bank is inviting the public to explore the digital world by launching a metaverse gallery. Available from 7 December, the virtual platform showcases digital artworks from local artists, including Yeung Hok Tak, Wong Ping and Flying Pig to broaden the reach of the artwork in various forms to connect to a more diverse audience. Customers can create and customise their avatars with different hairstyles, outfits and accessories. Furthermore, virtual sharing by artists, as well as a special fireside chat with speakers will be launched, to allow customers not just to view, but to become fully open to art through engaging and actively participating in these unique art experiences. HSBC said it will continue to build more real-world and metaverse-focused brand collaborations in the near future to open art, culture and, ultimately, a world of opportunity to customers.”

November 8, 2022

Top Post

Fraud Risks Spiral Amid Surge in Pay-Later Deals (Hong Kong)

The Standard

“Business consolidation and more regulations are inevitable as buy-now-pay-later platforms’ business surges in tandem with cyber crimes, risk analysts said. Such platforms that allow consumers to split bills into interest-free installments are becoming popular in Hong Kong. The surge in crimes came with scammers often creating accounts with fake or stolen identities, said Stephen Topliss, vice president of fraud and identity at Atlanta-based antifraud technology provider LexisNexis Risk Solutions who conducts data analysis for buy-now-pay-later providers. “Fraudsters are coming back with regrouping their [scamming] techniques, making the whole scam more complicated, which will be hard for providers to be alerted,” Topliss told The Standard. According to police figures for January to August, the SAR saw a total of 5,148 cases involving more than HK$37 million related to online shopping.”

November 4, 2022

On the web

Ant Bank (Hong Kong) Launches Ant Bank PayLater on AlipayHK

Yahoo Finance

“Appealing to Hong Kong consumers’ aspiration for diversified and flexible payment options, Ant Bank (Hong Kong) (“Ant Bank”) and AlipayHK jointly announced today the launch of Ant Bank PayLater on AlipayHK ahead of the Double 11 and Christmas shopping sprees. Ant Bank PayLater, which is currently in its trial period allows users to choose to pay in installments when shopping with AlipayHK’s robust network of partner merchants and on Taobao. AlipayHK and Ant Bank hope that this partnership, which brings together Ant Group’s flagship techfin products, will help stimulate the local retail business and the city’s economy.”

October 24, 2022

On the web

Hong Kong Presents Digital Currency Prototype, Project Aurum

Bitcoin News

“A collaboration between the BIS Innovation Hub Hong Kong Centre, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA), and the Hong Kong Applied Science and Technology Research Institute has produced a prototype of Hong Kong’s upcoming digital currency, the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) announced. Project Aurum is a full-stack, front-end and back-end, central bank digital currency (CBDC) system comprising a wholesale interbank system and a retail e-wallet system, the international financial institution explained in a press release this week. Participants in Aurum want to launch two different types of digital tokens. The first kind will be an intermediated digital currency while the second one will be a CBDC-backed stablecoin circulated in the interbank system.”

November 3, 2021

On the web

Hong Kong Hits Fintech Milestone With 700,000+ FPS Transactions a Day

South China Morning Post

“Hong Kong’s Faster Payment System (FPS) has surpassed 700,000 transactions a day just over three years after its debut, showcasing one of the ways the city is seeking to innovate as a financial technology hub, according to Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po . Speaking at the 2021 Hong Kong FinTech Week conference, Chan said the electronic system for immediate fund transfers and retail payments averaged 740,000 transactions per day worth HK$5.2 billion (US$668 million) at the end of September. Average daily transaction volumes have more than doubled from HK$2.4 billion in early 2020.”

April 5, 2021

On the wires

 EMQ Delivers Enhanced Cross-Border Payment Capabilities in Hong Kong

“Global financial settlement network EMQ today announced a significant enhancement to its cross-border payment capabilities by adding Hong Kong’s Faster Payment System (FPS) to the network. This extends EMQ’s network infrastructure deeper into domestic markets, enabling global customers to cost-effectively send funds in both Hong Kong Dollar (HKD) and Renminbi (RMB) in minutes, reaching a wider set of beneficiary accounts across all banks in Hong Kong.”

June 24, 2020

On the web

June 3, 2020

On the web

Octopus Lets Hong Kong Commuters Add Their Transit Card to iPhone and Apple Watch

NFC World

“Octopus transit card holders can now use their iPhone or Apple Watch to pay their fares and make purchases at 35,000 retail outlets across Hong Kong that accept Octopus for payments. “With Express Mode for Apple Pay, customers only need to tap their iPhone or Apple Watch to take public transportation — and they’re good to go,” Octopus says. “There’s no need to authenticate with Face ID or Touch ID, no extra taps and no extra steps. Transaction and balance details are instantly displayed on your iPhone or Apple Watch.””

November 29, 2018

On the web

Credit bureau TransUnion urged to tighten online security after local newspaper says it easily obtained data on Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam and Financial Secretary Paul Chan

Yahoo News

“Hong Kong’s Monetary Authority and privacy watchdog have called on major international credit bureau TransUnion to improve its online authentication procedures after a local newspaper claimed it could easily access the personal credit files of public figures in the city, including Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor and Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po. According to its website, TransUnion maintains credit records on 5.4 million consumers in the city and 500 million consumers and businesses worldwide.”

October 9, 2018

On the web

HOW CASHLESS MAINLAND CHINA MADE HONG KONG, SINGAPORE LOOK BACKWARD

South China Morning Post

“Like Hong Kong with its Octopus card, Singapore was an early adopter of e-payment systems, starting with the introduction of the General Interbank Recurring Order (GIRO) in 1985, which allowed people to make monthly payments to a billing organisation directly from their bank accounts. But since those early days both cities have found themselves leapfrogged in the race to the cashless society by mainland China’s burgeoning mobile payment scene.”

September 26, 2018

On the wires

The Launch of Faster Payment System (FPS)

“The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) announced the launch of the Faster Payment System (FPS) today. The FPS is one of the seven initiatives announced by the HKMA in September 2017 for preparing Hong Kong to move into a new era of Smart Banking. The FPS operates on a round-the-clock basis and connects banks and stored-value facility (SVF) operators on the same platform. It enables the public to transfer funds anytime, anywhere, across different banks or SVFs with funds available almost immediately. Fund transfer will become very user-friendly with the use of mobile number or email address as account proxy for the payee. In addition to the Hong Kong Dollar (HKD), the FPS also supports Renminbi (RMB) payments.”

September 11, 2018

On the wires

UnionPay International launches the “UnionPay” app in Hong Kong and Macau to enhance the local customers’ mobile payment experience

“UnionPay International announced today that in answer to the construction of the Greater Bay Area and to meet the increasingly payment needs brought by the exchanges between Hong Kong/Macau and the Chinese Mainland, the unified mobile payment app of China’s banking industry, “UnionPay”, has started offering service to customers in Hong Kong and Macau, facilitating the interconnection of mobile payment in the Greater Bay Area. From today, consumers in Hong Kong and Macau can bind their locally issued UnionPay cards to the “UnionPay” app and enjoy mobile payment service both in and outside Hong Kong and Macau.”

September 6, 2018

On the web

Hong Kong blockchain start-up rolls out Asia’s first cryptocurrency Visa debit card to take on credit cards

South China Morning Post

“The Crypto.com debit card will be linked to wallets for both fiat money and cryptocurrency, which will allow users to spend their cryptocurrencies after converting these into fiat money. The company supports five cryptocurrencies – bitcoin, litecoin, ethereum, MCO and Binance Coin – and these can be converted into seven fiat currencies, including the Singapore dollar, the US dollar and the Hong Kong dollar.”

July 26, 2018

Top Post

Hong Kong Launches Open API

finews.asia

“In a push to move Hong Kong’s financial sector into the era of «Smart Banking», the Hong Kong Monetary Authority said an open application programming interface, or API, will be launched on its official website for public access from Monday.  «Open API can help to ensure the competitiveness of the banking sector, encourage more parties to provide innovative and integrated services that improve customer experience,» said HKMA in its statement.  It will first release 50 sets of financial data and important information next week, followed by another 80 sets of information in later stages until the middle of next year. These cover frequently assessed information such as statistics on Hong Kong dollar exchange rates, interest rates, the banking sector and the Exchange Fund, which is used to back the currency.”

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