The Seychelles-based cryptocurrency exchange Huobi has obtained licenses to operate in New Zealand, after its Thai partner closed its site earlier this year due to concerns about regulations. The exchange gained a digital currency license and became the first licensed operator to offer a regulated spot exchange, a spokesperson for the New Zealand government’s Finance and Trade Minister told CoinDesk.
The expansion of Huobi opens a great opportunity for crypto gamblers and those who decide to enjoy bitcoin online casino here as there are now more trading opportunities in the country.
Trading Opportunities With Huobi Being Licensed in NZ
Crypto exchange Huobi has received licenses to operate an exchange and derivatives trading platform in New Zealand, having already launched an exchange in the region. New Zealand’s financial markets authority FMA released a statement in June, saying the company is now authorized to offer cash-settled exchange-traded derivatives, such as futures contracts and options on futures, for digital assets such as Bitcoin and Ethereum. Huobi will now be allowed to operate as a derivative market operator in New Zealand.
The decision was announced Friday after the Ministry of Finance approved the exchange’s application for a so-called Spot Exchange License, which gives it the power to match two parties to trade Bitcoin or other virtual currencies against the US dollar.
A spokesperson for Huobi Asia Pacific’s president, Edward Chen, told CoinDesk the exchange is “confident” the New Zealand operation would run smoothly, adding: “We’re excited to open up the market to New Zealanders and to be able to provide access to the most flexible exchange in the market today.”
The spokesperson continued: “We have a large user base in New Zealand with over a million registered accounts, and we’ve had a long relationship with the New Zealand financial authorities.” The spokesperson said that the Seychelles-based cryptocurrency exchange can now provide liquidity to users who want to buy and sell bitcoin. The exchange operates a trading venue where users can trade Bitcoin, Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash, and other digital currencies.
The news followed an announcement from Huobi’s Thailand partner about closing its Thai affiliate. FMA’s decision follows the closure of another Thai crypto exchange, Huobi Thailand, in May. Huobi announced it was pulling out of Thailand in May, citing difficulties in conducting business operations in the country.
The exchange cited the “inability to use traditional payment systems to exchange crypto and fiat currencies’ ‘ among the reasons for its departure. Thai regulators have said a number of exchanges should merge to avoid market consolidation, and earlier this year, they reportedly raided the offices of Huobi Global, which the exchange had said was its parent company.
Last week, it was revealed that Huobi has obtained a broker-dealer license in New Zealand, and its local arm has applied for the exchange license. The exchange has already opened a New Zealand branch in a larger, commercial office space, which includes a dedicated cryptocurrency laboratory.
According to FMA’s announcement, Huobi is now authorized to offer cash-settled derivatives. This means Huobi is able to settle exchange orders in cash, which allows customers to avoid the volatility and market uncertainty associated with crypto, and is not exposed to government bans, such as that imposed on Thai banks in 2018.
The exchange is also authorized to offer derivatives on Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH), and intends to offer Bitcoin Futures contracts (known as “BTC Futures”) in the near future. Huobi has signed a three-year license agreement with FMA, in which the exchange will pay $8,000 in regulatory costs, in addition to a $1,000 license fee.
Leon Li, the chief executive officer of Huobi, said:
“Huobi is thrilled to be one of the first crypto companies in New Zealand and one of the fastest growing exchanges in the region. We believe New Zealand will be a world-class jurisdiction for the crypto industry and plan to help make the country a global leader in this emerging market.”
Huobi Group’s FSPR registration is the first step in expanding its crypto trading business in New Zealand, as all exchanges must register on the platform in order to offer trading services to local consumers. Huobi’s local subsidiary, HBGL New Zealand Limited, is now authorized to provide regulated foreign currency exchange and money or value transfer services in NZ. Huobi can also provide asset management services and trading over the counter as a result of the registration.
Apart from pushing its presence in New Zealand, Huobi Group has also obtained the Innovation License under the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) to offer its crypto trading services in the country. Thus, the cryptocurrency exchange is expanding its global footprint by winning its first-ever licenses in the two countries. This move not only affects the cryptocurrency market; it also brings gambling in Australia, Latin America, and other countries to a whole new level.