In the aftermath of the crackdown by the Chinese government on the cryptocurrency world’s operations within the country, the Bitcoin exchanges in China are looking towards more crypto-friendly countries to accommodate them and let them continue their business. 19 Chinese companies are reported to be applying for trading license so they can operate in Japan while there are those considering a move to Singapore, South Korea and Hong Kong.
Chinese exchanges are seeking to migrate all their operations to other, more crypto-currency friendly countries in the Asian continent. According to Bloomberg:
“They’re applying for licenses in Japan — solo or via partners — setting up over-the-counter shops in Hong Kong, or laying the groundwork to operate from Singapore and South Korea.”
Lennix-Lai is the marketing director for Okex exchange, based in Hong Kong, believes that there is enough of a demand to make this a possibility and a necessity. Lennix-Lai thinks that since they were one of the biggest operators in the country of China, they have a good chance of being able to compete on a global level.
Earlier in April, Japan legalized Bitcoin as a method of payment and because of this change in legislation, the cryptocurrency exchanges are required to register with the Japanese FSA (Financial Services Agency). The agency granted licenses to 11 Japanese Bitcoin exchanges for the first time. Bloomberg reported that out of all the Chinese exchanges, a total of nineteen exchanges are looking towards applying for a license to operate in Japan.
While there are a lot of Chinese exchanges applying for a license to operate in Japan, there are others who are in the works trying to get local partners instead. For instance, Hong Kong based exchange Binance is looking towards local partners and is also considering the acquisition of an operational exchange as revealed by their CEO Zhang Changpeng. Even Beijing based exchange Bixin is looking to get in on this.
The head of Quoine, Mike Kayamori from the Singapore based exchange has a strong presence in Japan. He says that they are talking to most of them and they are all in a desperate situation right now. Reportedlly, Kayamori is expected to sign a deal with them by the end of the year with him saying:
“There’s a lot of Chinese retail people reaching out to us, but we can’t handle it. So if a Chinese partner can handle all of those and they connect to us, that will be much easier.”
Japan is not the only option that the Chinese exchanges are looking to for a second chance. Some Chinese investors have reportedly resorted to peer-to-peer trading over messaging apps like Telegram ever since the Chinese government went on a rampage with their crackdown. It means that the Chinese investors can basically buy from individuals who have access to the foreign cryptocurrency markets.
There are also some Chinese exchanges which are turning their heads towards Singapore as a plan B. Ravi Menon, the managing director of MAS (Monetary Authority of Singapore) was reported as saying that the central bank in Singapore has no intentions of regulating cryptocurrencies. Singapore is working on making a more formalized system of payment services regulations, which will have little effect on activities pertaining to the digital currencies.