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Hong Kong's central bank launches industry consultation on Open API framework

Hong Kong’s central bank launches industry consultation on Open API framework

(12 January 2018 - Hong Kong) The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) has issued a consultation on Open API framework, setting out the HKMA’s intended approach to Open Application Programming Interfaces (API) for the banking industry in Hong Kong. The HKMA now invites relevant parties in the industry to provide comments on the consultation paper.

Howard Lee, deputy chief executive of the HKMA, said, “By formulating an Open API framework, we aim to facilitate the development and wider adoption of Open API by the banking sector, thereby maintaining its competitiveness and improving financial services for better consumer experience through collaboration between banks and tech firms. The HKMA will continue to work with different stakeholders to facilitate financial innovation in the banking sector.”

The formulation of the Open API framework is one of the seven initiatives announced by the HKMA in September 2017 to prepare Hong Kong to move into a New Era of Smart Banking.

Open API allows better and easier system and service integration between banks and other industries such as lifestyle, healthcare and retail services.

Effective implementation of Open API will enable, for example, information of different banks’ products and services to be aggregated under the same website/app for comparison and financial planning by users with ease while new service providers can also make use of the open information to offer unique products and new customer experience. As a result, users can conveniently stay on one system to enjoy all services offered by both the banks and other industries in a secure environment.

The proposed Open API framework set out in the consultation paper comprises a selection of Open API functions and deployment timeframe, technical standards, third-party service provider governance, facilitation measures and the maintenance models.

The full consultation paper can be downloaded from the HKMA website. All comments should be submitted in writing to the HKMA by March 15th.

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