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Report: Hong Kong strengthens surveillance on UnionPay card withdrawals

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Report: Hong Kong strengthens surveillance on UnionPay card withdrawals

Hong Kong's banking regulator is tightening surveillance on cash withdrawals by China-issued cards as it steps up efforts to curb capital outflows from China, the South China Morning Post reported Aug. 7, citing a notice seen by Apple Daily.

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority has instructed banks to submit data on ATM cash withdrawals using China-issued UnionPay cards. The regulator wants data on the volume and timing of withdrawals for the first six months of 2017 and told banks to submit the details by the week of Aug. 7.

The move follows a similar measure in Macau which sought to strengthen supervision on cash withdrawals from UnionPay cards.

Under China's 2016 foreign exchange regulations, Chinese individuals can withdraw up to 100,000 yuan overseas annually. UnionPay card users, however, can withdraw up to 10,000 yuan per day, per card, prompting authorities to crack down on individuals using UnionPay cards to skirt around the forex regulations.

A spokesperson from the Hong Kong Monetary Authority declined to comment on the report.

As of Aug. 7, US$1 was equivalent to 6.72 Chinese yuan.