Crypto giant Binance ordered to cease activity in the UK
Binance, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, could be banned in the UK following a warning from the financial regulator.
On Saturday (26 June), the Financial Conduct Authority said that Binance Markets Limited is “not permitted to undertake any regulated activity in the UK”.
“No other entity in the Binance Group holds any form of UK authorisation, registration or licence to conduct regulated activity in the UK,” the FCA said.
Companies like Binance are required to register with the FCA in order to offer digital asset services. The company has until this Wednesday (30 June) to comply with the FCA’s order.
The notice went on to warn the public to be wary of cryptocurrency and digital assets investments.
Binance was founded in China and has moved its base around in recent years. It is currently headquartered in the Cayman Islands and was previously based in Malta. But there have been some disputes and confusion over where exactly it is headquartered.
Binance Markets Limited, the UK-registered company, is based in London.
In a Twitter thread, Binance said that the notice has “no direct impact” on its business and it will continue to offer cryptocurrency buying and selling through its main site.
“We take a collaborative approach in working with regulators and we take our compliance obligations very seriously,” it said.
It is the latest case of the exchange meeting hurdles with a regulator. Last Friday, it pulled services in Ontario after the Canadian province’s regulator, the Ontario Securities Commission, received allegations against the exchange that it was not meeting securities regulations.
On the same day, Japan’s Financial Services Agency issued a notice stating that Binance is not cleared or regulated to do business in Japan. A spokesperson for the company told CoinDesk that it does not “actively solicit Japanese users”.