The adoption of fintech has been remarkable. Companies all over the world are excited to get involved in the digitization sector, and many are keeping a particular eye on the development of digital assets. Both local and global firms in Hong Kong have now been given the opportunity to collaborate with Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) to boost the growth and adoption of fintech in Asia and beyond, following an announcement by the central banking institution and Invest Hong Kong (InvestHK) where it was announced that the Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) track would be added to the Global Fast Track 2022.
The CBDC track invites banks, fintechs and technology firms to submit innovative solutions in eight focus areas, including adoption of CBDC (rCBDC), wholesale CBDC (wCBDC), programmable money, interoperability, privacy, cyber security, currency and liquidity management, and offline payments .
Shortlisted applicants will then participate in a pitching session exclusive to the pitch and compete for three awards, namely Best Use Case Award, Best Technology Award and Best Ecosystem Award. All qualified candidates may also have the opportunities to work with the HKMA on research projects and pilots to promote the future growth of the CBDC ecosystem.
In recent years, Hong Kong has been a leader in international collaboration and research on CBDC, with the development of wCBDC well recognized by the market and ranked as one of the most mature of its kind in the world. The HKMA has actively led the exploration of both wCBDC and rCBDC. The launch of the CBDC track shows that the HKMA is committed to facilitating the sector’s growth, promoting industry engagement and harnessing new technologies to improve the financial system.
“CBDC exploration has been high on the agenda of central banks around the world and has gained reasonable traction in recent years. As Hong Kong’s central banking institution, we seek to future-proof Hong Kong in terms of CBDC readiness on both the wholesale and retail fronts as part of our ‘Fintech 2025’ strategy. This year we are excited to partner with InvestHK and introduce a new CBDC track to the Global Fast Track. We are confident that this new CBDC track will yield fruitful results and provide valuable insights, adding to the wealth of knowledge about CBDC and contribute to an improved CBDC ecosystem,” said Nelson ChowChief Fintech Officer at HKMA.
“We are truly honored and excited to work with the HKMA to launch the CBDC track. By connecting private sector leaders directly with the regulator, the track further enables Global Fast Track 2022 to provide comprehensive, one-stop support to innovators around in the world, while strengthening Hong Kong’s status as a leading international fintech hub. Following last year’s success, we believe the enriched program will facilitate fintech development in the city and beyond,” he says. Charles Ngassistant director general for investment promotion at InvestHK.
InvestHK has unveiled the full list of corporate, investor and service champions for this year’s Global Fast Track. In addition, a wide range of exciting partner programs, including Visa Fintech Fast Track and incubator programs powered by Cyberport and Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Companyhas also been announced.
Global Fast Track is a one-stop program with a business matching portal, pitching competition and mentoring sessions connecting global fintech companies with a diverse range of Asian business, investor and service champions to explore potential business partnerships and investments. Global Fast Track is organized by InvestHK and co-organized by Finnovasia.