ZA Bank, Hong Kong’s virtual bank, has Wednesday unveiled its plan to introduce virtual asset trading services for retail investors.

With this move, ZA Bank said in a statement that the firm is set to support the Hong Kong SAR government’s vision to develop a vibrant sector and ecosystem for virtual assets.

ZA Bank’s plan was formulated in response to the growing demand for virtual assets in the city.

By partnering with Hong Kong-licensed virtual asset exchanges, ZA Bank aims to obtain the required regulatory approvals to enable retail investors to trade virtual assets by using fiat currency within the ZA Bank App.

“We welcome the licensing guidelines issued yesterday by the Hong Kong SFC, and we are excited to offer the new investment opportunities brought by virtual assets to our users, ” said Ronald lu, Chief Executive Officer of ZA Bank.

He believes that virtual assets hold the potential to become a significant asset class in the future.

“By offering virtual asset trading services, we will give our users the opportunity to stay ahead of the curve with ZA Bank under a regulated environment,” he added.

According to the statement, this move comes as part of ZA Bank’s strategic expansion plan to provide a comprehensive suite of financial services.

In addition to virtual asset trading, ZA Bank also plans to introduce US stock trading services in due course.

These new offerings will further strengthen ZA Bank’s position as an innovative wealth management platform, catering to the evolving needs of its users.

“Users can look forward to a more diverse banking product suite as we continue to evolve in our mission to become a future bank for now,” added Iu.

As a licensed bank in Hong Kong, ZA Bank adheres to the highest standard of customer security and regulatory compliance.

Upon obtaining the necessary regulatory approvals for virtual asset trading services, ZA Bank will work closely with relevant stakeholders to implement appropriate safeguards to ensure the safety and integrity of its services.

These measures will encompass collaborating with trusted third-party providers, implementing advanced security protocols, and adhering to strict anti-money laundering (AML) and know-your-customer (KYC) regulations.

In addition, ZA Bank plans to educate its users on the risks and benefits associated with virtual asset trading, to ensure that customers can make informed decisions.

ZA Bank, licensed by the Hong Kong Monetary Authority on March 27, 2019, is one of the first batch of virtual banks in Hong Kong.

On March 24, 2020, the bank officially launched its services to the public, making it the first fully operating virtual bank in Hong Kong.

On March 22, 2021, the bank officially launched business banking to deliver an innovative banking experience to local small and medium-sized enterprises.

ZA Bank was established by ZhongAn Technologies International Group Limited.

With its “community-driven” approach, ZA Bank encourages users to directly contribute to its product development and design processes, helping the bank create innovative services that better serve the needs of Hong Kong customers.

Based on market data as of December 31, 2022, ZA Bank has gained the support of more than 650,000 users, becoming the largest virtual bank in Hong Kong in terms of user base with a leading position in the virtual banking industry in terms of customer deposits, assets and income.

ZA International was established in Hong Kong in December 2017, by ZhongAn Online P&C Insurance Co., Ltd., an online-only insurtech company in China, to explore international business development, collaboration and investment opportunities in the area of fintech and insurtech in overseas markets.

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