As Bitcoin cracks $9,000 to reach a yearly high topping $9,300, Hong Kong residents are paying a premium for the world’s largest cryptocurrency.
The digital asset is reportedly being used as a safe haven for wealthy residents in Hong Kong who are looking for a way to protect their funds against a proposed law that would allow the government to extradite alleged criminals to mainland China where they would tried.
The extradition bill would impact Hong Kong’s status as a financial powerhouse, affecting not only Hong Kong residents but also foreign nationals who are living or traveling through the territory.
A financial advisor reports that capital flight is underway.
“The fear is that the bar is coming right down on Beijing’s ability to get your assets in Hong Kong. Singapore is the favored destination.”
Since extradition would allow officials to seize assets, wealthy investors and crypto enthusiasts are turning to offshore investments and alternative digital assets, such as Bitcoin.
Local crypto exchange Tidebit shows that the price of BTC is roughly $160 higher than the global average.
Bitcoin is trading at a premium of about $160 in Hong Kong.
Pictured is the HK exchange TideBit where a single BTC is going for 73,120 HKD ($9337). A total of $159 above Coindesk’s current rate.
This is where the safe haven play comes in. pic.twitter.com/HNZWQkJ61j
— Mati Greenspan (@MatiGreenspan) June 17, 2019
Millennials in black t-shirts organized a historic “Black March” in Victoria Park on Sunday, where protestors demanded the withdrawal of the controversial extradition bill and the resignation of Chief Executive Carrie Lam. Organizers report that the march was the largest in history with nearly two million people participating,