Is APAC Leading the Race for Security Token Adoption?
It could be said that APAC has traditionally trailed Europe and North America in terms of developing markets for new asset classes, but something seems different with digital assets.
Many of the organizations we are speaking to in the region are pushing hard to take the initiative and utilise blockchain technology. Ostensibly across a variety of companies too – from regulatory bodies to financial institutions and from FinTechs to exchanges.
Why is there such a drawing interest from the region? First and foremost, positive regulation has driven the adoption of security tokens in Asia. 2018 saw Thailand and Singapore announce clearly defined legislations for security tokens. More recently, in 2020 Japanese regulators made amendments to their securities regulations to add clarity for market operators. Secondly, the lack of market standards in the region has forced actors to look elsewhere for standardization. For the last year we have brought Europe’s most adopted token standard, the T-REX, to market operators in the region and issued a number of tokens across equity, funds and commodities.
Particularly amongst exchanges, examples of digital asset projects are not hard to find. The Stock Exchange of Thailand has developed a three year plan focused on developing a one-stop digital capital markets solution. Last year the Australian Securities Exchange opened its DLT-based customer development environment, while the Hong Kong Stock Exchange and Singapore Exchange have been piloting similar projects.
Even amidst the pandemic, innovation has not been stifled. Regional regulator engagement and new pockets of FinTech innovation has accelerated the growth of digital assets in the region.