Hong Kong regulators said they are ready to consider applications for spot crypto exchange-traded funds (ETFs). In a joint statement, the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) and Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) said the virtual asset environment has changed since 2018, when the SFC formulated a “professional-investors only” regulatory approach. Hong Kong has been loosening its approach to crypto this year, and the regulators’ opinion on retail exposure to digital assets has shifted. In October, the SFC updated its rule book to allow a broader range of investors to engage in spot-crypto and ETF investing. Then, last month, SFC Chief Executive Officer Julia Leung said the regulator was moving toward allowing retail amid investors to buy spot crypto ETFs and would “welcome proposals using innovative technology that boosts efficiency and customer experience” provided any risks were addressed.