Hong Kong’s authorities have signalled their openness to collaborate with the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) in the area of digital currency/electronic payments (DC/EP). A comment on the matter was delivered by the Hong Kong Secretary for Financial Services and the Treasury, Mr Christopher Hui, in the Legislative Council today.

Mr Christopher Hui explained that if the Digital Currency/Electronic Payment (DC/EP) being developed by the PBoC can be applied to cross-boundary payment, it would further promote the mutual connectivity between the Mainland (including the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area) and Hong Kong. The Government and the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) will continue to maintain communication, and explore the possibility of collaboration with the PBoC.

In addition, the Financial Services Development Council has formed a working group to study how Hong Kong can seize the opportunities from DC/EP’s development.

“We have been paying attention to the developments of the PBoC’s DC/EP. We understand that currently, the trial of DC/EP is primarily used for retail payments in the Mainland. The PBoC is also conducting DC/EP trials in selected cities in the Mainland”, Mr Christopher Hui noted.

In the event that the PBoC would like to explore the use of DC/EP in places outside of the Mainland, including Hong Kong, the Government and the HKMA will actively respond and collaborate, the top official says.

“We will also continue to explore with the industry and Mainland authorities on the enhancement and expansion of channels for two-way flow of cross-boundary RMB funds”, he added.