Binance affiliate says will withdraw Singapore licence application – Reuters

binance-affiliate-says-will-withdraw-singapore-licence-application-–-reuters

HONG KONG (Reuters) -The Singapore affiliate of Binance, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, said in a statement on Monday it will withdraw its local license application and wind down its digital payment token business in the city-state.

Governments and financial watchdogs globally have intensified scrutiny over the cryptocurrency industry this year and in some cases beefed up regulations, posing a challenge to exchanges such as Binance that have thrived in a mostly unregulated environment.

Singapore is among the forerunners globally in developing a formal licensing framework for cryptocurrency companies.

Binance Asia Services Pte Ltd was one of over 100 cryptocurrency companies that has applied for a license to operate in Singapore and was allowed to continue doing business while that license was being processed.

“Taking into account strategic, commercial and developmental considerations globally, Binance Asia Services has withdrawn its application to the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) for a license to operate a regulated cryptocurrency exchange in the country,” the company said, adding it would refocus operations in Singapore into a blockchain innovation hub.

Binance.sg, a platform for trading fiat and cryptocurrencies will wind down operations and close by Feb. 13 2022, the company also said in the statement.

Binance said in September that because of local regulation, users in Singapore would not be able to trade on its global platform.

Singapore is not the only jurisdiction where Binance has run into difficulties. Regulators in Hong Kong, Britain, Germany, and Japan, among others, have ratcheted up pressure on Binance this year, worried about consumer protection and the standard of anti-money laundering checks at crypto exchanges generally.

Reporting by Alun John in Hong Kong and Aradhana Aravindan in SingaporeEditing by Shri Navaratnam and Ana Nicolaci da Costa

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