Close this search box.

We are creating some awesome events for you. Kindly bear with us.

HK Hits Major Fintech Milestone

Hong Kong Monetary Authority Milestone for Fintech

With the launch of more virtual banks this year, Hongkongers can expect to benefit from cheaper and better banking services, experts at the Asian Financial Forum stated.

Their comments followed the revelation that the Hong Kong Monetary Authority has hit an important milestone in its efforts to promote financial technology (fintech). Half the population of the city has now signed up to its Faster Payment System, which enables the free transfer of money between bank accounts via mobile phone.

The development makes it clear that the city is rapidly moving quickly into a new era of branchless banking, a shift that brings up challenges for traditional lenders which must innovate to cope with the competition, officials at the annual conference held by the Hong Kong government said.

It was noted that the Faster Payment System is an important move for the city to develop its fintech. The system has been very popular with the Hong Kong public.

The electronic interbank payment system was introduced by the HKMA in September 2018. It now has half of the local population registered an average daily transaction volume of up to HK$2.4 billion.

The system allows anyone to sign up with their mobile phone number or email address and transfer money between different bank accounts. They can also make payments at shops and restaurants using QR codes on their smartphones.

Next Steps

The first quarter of this year in Hong Kong will see the launch of more virtual banks, which will provide more online banking services to the public.

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority has issued eight virtual bank licences since March 2019. The first virtual lender began operating in December 2019.

The virtual lender, on 27 January 2020, invited people who had registered on its website to open an account. It is offering a 6.8 per cent interest rate for three-month time deposits of up to HK$100,000 during a promotional period that runs until 26 February.

Most of the other seven virtual banks are expected to launch their operations in the first half of this year. The Monetary Authority of Singapore will also issue five digital bank licences, a move set to pile more pressure on traditional lenders.

It was noted that the banking industry will need to innovate and upgrade its technology to cope with the many challenges amid the geopolitical tension and the global economic slowdown, the Deputy Chief Executive of HKMA stated in another panel discussion at the conference.

The launch of virtual banks will benefit the public as a whole because it allows people who have never had a bank account to finally enjoy banking services.

One expert noted that virtual banks can benefit the majority of people in underdeveloped nations. In many such markets in Asia and Africa, half of the population do not have bank accounts. There are often more people with mobile phones than people with bank accounts.

Around two-thirds of these populations are women and many are low-income earners. The virtual banks, which use technology to operate at a low cost and hence can offer cheaper banking services, will help improve financial inclusion and benefit a lot of people in these markets.

OpenGov Asia earlier reported that the Hong Kong Institute of Bankers (HKIB) stated that six virtual banks in Hong Kong have recently joined the Institute as Corporate Members.

Launching virtual banks has marked a new era in the development of Hong Kong’s banking sector and underlines that professional training must advance to keep pace.

Over the next year, the HKIB will continue efforts to promote Fintech development in Hong Kong. As the Fintech ecosystem in Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area continues to grow in prominence, the institute remains committed to improving the cross-border and cross-sector financial and market knowledge of banking practitioners through its professional training programmes to help local professionals sustain their competitiveness.


Qlik’s vision is a data-literate world, where everyone can use data and analytics to improve decision-making and solve their most challenging problems. A private company, Qlik offers real-time data integration and analytics solutions, powered by Qlik Cloud, to close the gaps between data, insights and action. By transforming data into Active Intelligence, businesses can drive better decisions, improve revenue and profitability, and optimize customer relationships. Qlik serves more than 38,000 active customers in over 100 countries.


As a Titanium Black Partner of Dell Technologies, CTC Global Singapore boasts unparalleled access to resources.

Established in 1972, we bring 52 years of experience to the table, solidifying our position as a leading IT solutions provider in Singapore. With over 300 qualified IT professionals, we are dedicated to delivering integrated solutions that empower your organization in key areas such as Automation & AI, Cyber Security, App Modernization & Data Analytics, Enterprise Cloud Infrastructure, Workplace Modernization and Professional Services.

Renowned for our consulting expertise and delivering expert IT solutions, CTC Global Singapore has become the preferred IT outsourcing partner for businesses across Singapore.


Planview has one mission: to build the future of connected work. Our solutions enable organizations to connect the business from ideas to impact, empowering companies to accelerate the achievement of what matters most. Planview’s full spectrum of Portfolio Management and Work Management solutions creates an organizational focus on the strategic outcomes that matter and empowers teams to deliver their best work, no matter how they work. The comprehensive Planview platform and enterprise success model enables customers to deliver innovative, competitive products, services, and customer experiences. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, with locations around the world, Planview has more than 1,300 employees supporting 4,500 customers and 2.6 million users worldwide. For more information, visit


SIRIM is a premier industrial research and technology organisation in Malaysia, wholly-owned by the Minister​ of Finance Incorporated. With over forty years of experience and expertise, SIRIM is mandated as the machinery for research and technology development, and the national champion of quality. SIRIM has always played a major role in the development of the country’s private sector. By tapping into our expertise and knowledge base, we focus on developing new technologies and improvements in the manufacturing, technology and services sectors. We nurture Small Medium Enterprises (SME) growth with solutions for technology penetration and upgrading, making it an ideal technology partner for SMEs.


HashiCorp provides infrastructure automation software for multi-cloud environments, enabling enterprises to unlock a common cloud operating model to provision, secure, connect, and run any application on any infrastructure. HashiCorp tools allow organizations to deliver applications faster by helping enterprises transition from manual processes and ITIL practices to self-service automation and DevOps practices. 


IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and consulting services provider, helping clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,800 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently, and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity, and service. For more information, visit