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South Korean Fintech Firms Look to Enter China

Samburaj Das on 22/12/2016


Following the South Korean government’s determined push to support and encourage Fintech development, announced in late October, the country’s Fintech startups are looking to gain a foothold in China.


Five South Korean Firms and interested business partners in China were a part of a pitch made today by the firms in Beijing, according to the Korea Herald. The event, titled “Fintech Demo Day in Beijing”, was funded by the South Korean government and saw the country’s industry startups showcase technologies such as a mobile wallet, biometric identification, and a robo-adviser, among other services.


The Fintech Center also reportedly signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the operator of the industrial zone in Chengdu, the capital city of China’s Sichuan province.


The Financial Services Commission (FSC), the South Korean government’s foremost financial regulator, is spearheading the country’s Fintech endeavor. The MOU will establish a sweeping Fintech cooperation with China, the FSC claimed.

Exporting Fintech as a Hub


The Beijing “Demo Day” is the last of several events held by South Korea’s FSC around the world. Previously, demo day events have been held in Singapore, Cambodia, London and Silicon Valley.


“[The government] plans to continue such fintech demo day events in 2017,” the FSC reportedly stated.

Seoul Blockchain, Spurred on by the government, Seoul could soon become a Fintech hub in Asia.


The Beijing event comes amid a frenetic Fintech development plan put in place by the South Korean government. The mandate will see a digital currency system established in 2017 institutionally, as South Korea looks to introduce regulations for bitcoin the same year.


The government has already announced Fintech collaborations with Singapore and Indonesia.


Away from the state, private companies and institutions are already ramping up Fintech and blockchain initiatives.


A notable example is that of Shinhan Bank – one of South Korea’s largest financial institutions – that will begin a bitcoin-powered remittance service between Korea and China before the end of 2016.


Other efforts include a blockchain market developed by the Korea Exchange – the country’s sole securities exchange operator – that will enable private companies and startups trade equity shares on the open market. Earlier this month, 21 financial investment companies and five blockchain-centric Fintech firms signed an MoU to develop distributed ledger solutions collaboratively, forming the country’s first blockchain consortium.

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