Thursday, May 28, 2020

Syren Johnstone on Fintech Regulation in Asia (new book chapter)

"Fintech regulation in Asia"
in Cian, M. and Sandei, C (eds),  Dritto del Fintech (Kluwer, 2020) Part IV, pp. 699-714
Introduction: All major jurisdictions within the Asia region, as with other regions globally, have recognized the importance of Fintech to the development of its financial markets. Earlier chapters of this book have well recited the advantages of Fintech, and the associated risks, and these are also common to the Asian context and need not be repeated here. The approach to regulation in Asia has been diverse owing to different political, legal and cultural considerations in each jurisdiction. By way of broad characterization, while the efficiencies that Fintech solutions bring to traditional financial services have been a primary objective of regulatory facilitation throughout Asia, the emergence of digital assets and the primary and secondary markets that have evolved around them has been an object of concern and caution. Accordingly, the region has been active in developing specific laws and regulations related to e-money payment systems and financial services, while adopting a conservative risk-based approach to financing activities that tap the public capital market via digital assets. As to the latter, the larger capital markets of North Asia have been of interest to watch as developments have ranged from more permissive industry-regulator partnering to develop more granular regulation (Japan), to cautious approaches that tend to follow the United States model of openly permitting industry development while applying existing laws where possible (Hong Kong), to banning specific classes of activity while also promoting technology including blockchain (Mainland China).

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