One of the world's leading cryptocurrency exchanges, OKEx, is giving Hedera Hashgraph’s HBAR token the green light.

The Malta-based exchange today announced that Hedera’s token will go live on its platform on September 17, though customers can begin making deposits and withdrawals as early as 4 pm CEST September 16.

HBAR is the native digital currency of the Hedera Hashgraph, an open-source public blockchain network that offers cryptocurrency, smart contracts and file services. It is operated by a group of 39 independent enterprises across the globe, including software giant IBM, Boeing and Tata Communications. The idea, according to Hedera, is for its council to ensure that the network remains decentralized and democratic in its governance.


“Hedera and OKEx share the same goal of building a trusted, safe and fair digital future for everyone through developing a neutral, open-access infrastructure,” said Andy Cheung, head of operations of OKEx, in a statement. “With such a powerful, enterprise-grade ledger technology, we believe it is a big step forward in mainstream adoption of decentralization.”

Founded in 2017, OKEx is a global exchange on the island nation of Malta, a country that has become something of a cryptocurrency haven over the past few years given its relatively lax regulations for exchanges, brokerages, traders and asset managers. Since 2018, the country has lured several crypto firms to its shores, including Binance, which left its native China (and then later Japan) to resituate itself within Malta’s borders.

OKEx says it decides which coins to list depending on several factors, such as a currency’s overall structure, its business model, and how in line it is with legal statutes. Tokens involving projects that boost participation of the crypto community are also given special consideration, the exchange claims.

The news of HBAR’s listing on OKEx in mid-September jibes with other recent announcements from Hedera, including that its mainnet beta will be open to the public beginning on September 16, meaning developers will soon be able to build decentralized applications on its network blockchain, and its token will enter the wild.

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