Hong Kong OKEx Introduces Administrative Changes to Adjust to Beijing

Cryptocurrency exchange operator OKEx has banned unregistered withdrawals and put a cap on daily withdrawals.

The Hong Kong-based digital currency exchange OKEx introduced a slew of policy changes including a daily withdrawal cap, limited use of an account, and a ban on unverified withdrawals, a report indicated.

OKEx said the new policy commenced Tuesday as it advised its partner platforms about changes that will be based on a tiered verification KYC (know your customer) system.

The move comes after a series of further regulation tightening in China, the report added.

In September 2017, the Chinese government banned initial coin offerings (ICOs) and stopped Bitcoin trading in renminbi (RMB), thus ending a lucrative opportunity for the country's top tech startups that had been vigorously using to raise funds for the capital needs.

The ban, which was seen by industry insiders as a major blow to the developing cryptocurrency market, also left 88 Chinese-based exchanges and several domestic projects with no choice but to relocate somewhere else where regulations are more welcoming to them.

Over the weekend, China’s internet giant Baidu said it would join the anti-cryptocurrency bandwagon and is blocking crypto-related content. Reports said Baidu started filtering, deleting and banning any cryptocurrency-related publications on its Reddit-like Baidu Tieba forum platform. 

Last week, Chinese messaging app WeChat pulled the plug on several accounts that focus on blockchain and cryptocurrency news, particularly those that promote blockchain, cryptocurrencies, initial coin offerings (ICOs), and crypto trading. The decision is to comply with the government’s ban on digital currency activities.

WeChat explained its decision:

 “A Tencent official said that some public accounts are suspected of publishing ICO and virtual currency trading hype information violating the ‘Interim Provisions on the Development of Public Information Services for Instant Messaging Tools.’”

The Hong Kong government’s moves, along with those of Beijing, run counter to the general trend in Asia. Indeed, the governments of the Philippines, Thailand, and South Korea are actively pursuing the creation of cryptocurrency hubs.