A government advisory panel has advised Hong Kong’s financial sector to focus developing cybersecurity and financial technology to close the gap with its international rivals and remain relevant as a global financial hub.
The advice was given by the Financial Services Development Council (FSDC), a government-formed panel composed experts from the financial, technological, and legal sectors, among others.
Financial services make up around one-fifth of the economy and employs 6% of its workforce, making it one of Hong Kong’s most critical components.
“These are specific areas where we think Hong Kong has natural opportunities and also opportunities in attracting overseas investment into fintech, but also in developing local startups and entrepreneurs,” James Lloyd, Asia-Pacific fintech leader at consultancy EY
. Lloyd is also a member of the FSDC.
Among the FSDC’s suggestions were to establish a government office in charge of fintech policy and regulation, and a cyber security centre funded by the government.
It also suggested creating a digital ID system for individuals and corporations, which will make it easier for financial institutions to meet “know your customer” requirements, as well help combat money laundering and fraud.
In order to keep up with the times, the FSDC urged Hong Kong authorities to take action to make the city more open to “digital solutions”, which include recognising digital currencies and researching distributed ledger technology.
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