Hong Kong and Australia agree on fintech cooperation

The Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (‘the SFC’) and ASIC have signed a Co-operation Agreement which provides a framework for cooperation to support and understand financial innovation in each economy.

Signing the Agreement, ASIC Commissioner Cathie Armour said, ‘Financial services are a major contributor to Hong Kong’s US$316 billion economy. The Cooperation Agreement is a significant boost for Australia’s burgeoning fintech sector and will ease entry into this important market for innovative Australian businesses.’

Hong Kong is Australia’s seventh most important destination for services exports, valued at AUD$2.4 billion last year, and sixth largest source of services imports, valued at AUD$3 billion. This is the fourth fintech referral agreement ASIC has entered into, following on from agreements with the United Kingdom, Singapore and Ontario.

The agreement will enable the SFC and ASIC to refer innovative fintech businesses to each other for advice and support via ASIC’s Innovation Hub and its Hong Kong equivalent, the SFC’s Fintech Contact Point. This means Australian fintech businesses wishing to operate in Hong Kong will now have a simple pathway for engaging with the SFC, and vice versa.

The Innovation Hub and Fintech Contact Point offer assistance to innovative fintech businesses to understand the regulatory regimes in each of their jurisdictions.