Public Metaverse Author: Kristina Dosen
A Hong Kong-based court has recognized cryptocurrencies as property that can be owned and claimed, according to a ruling related to defunct crypto exchange Gatecoin. In the stated case, Judge Linda Chan reportedly said that crypto has property attributes. The court thought it was fine to follow the rationale applied by other jurisdictions: that crypto is property and can be subject to demand.

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Content accuracy validation date: 03.05.2023
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This ruling can potentially provide insolvency practitioners in Hong Kong with precision over digital assets. Recognizing that crypto represents a share-like asset brings Hong Kong into line with other jurisdictions.

The case also concerns Gatecoin, a Hong Kong-based crypto exchange that suffered a hack in 2016 and lost two million dollars in digital assets. The exchange announced in March 2019 that it had received a compulsory liquidation order from a Hong Kong court.

In the US, the IRS recognizes cryptocurrencies as property for federal tax purposes. This means that the principles that apply to real estate transactions also apply to cryptocurrency transactions. Courts in China have also recognized crypto as property as early as 2019, when the Hangzhou Internet Court legally recognized bitcoin as digital property.

As Hong Kong pushes its goal to become a global crypto hub, China's state-linked banks are seizing the opportunity to build partnerships and bring regulated crypto firms to Hong Kong. The events took place despite a ban on crypto activities in China.


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