Crypto exchange Binance is winding down its exchange operation in Singapore after the company decided to withdraw its application with the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to operate a digital asset exchange in the country. “Buying and selling of crypto from existing assets of users will be discontinued from 13 January 2022,” said Binance Singapore.
Binance Withdraws Application to Operate Crypto Exchange in Singapore
Binance announced Monday some changes affecting all users of its Singaporean platform, Binance.sg. Noting that “The decision has not been made lightly,” the exchange detailed:
We are writing to you today to inform you that Binance Asia Services Pte Ltd (BAS) intends to withdraw its licensing efforts in Singapore and wind down its digital payment token (‘DPT’) services in Singapore by 13 February 2022.
Binance explained that with immediate effect, no new user registrations will be permitted on Binance.sg and existing users will not be able to deposit crypto or fiat on the platform.
However, the exchange clarified that “Users may continue to buy and sell crypto using their existing assets until 12 January 2022,” urging customers to start making plans to withdraw their fiat and cryptocurrencies from the platform.
Between Jan. 13 and Feb. 13, 2022, “Users can only withdraw and move their crypto to third-party platforms or crypto wallets; and/or withdraw their SGD,” the exchange stressed, noting that “All accounts must be closed by 13 February 2022.”
CEO Explains Why Binance Singapore Is Shutting Down Crypto Exchange Operation
Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao (CZ) took to Twitter Monday to explain the reason his company has decided to withdraw the application to operate a local exchange in Singapore. He tweeted:
Binance made a sizable investment into regulated exchange HGX last week. This investment made our own application somewhat redundant. We will continue to work through our partners to grow the crypto industry in Singapore.
Last week, Binance announced that it has acquired an 18% stake in Singapore-regulated private securities exchange, Hg Exchange (HGX).
In September, Binance ended some services in Singapore after the MAS issued a warning telling the exchange to cease providing payment services. Binance then stopped providing fiat deposit services, spot trading of cryptocurrencies, the purchase of cryptocurrencies through fiat channels, and liquid swaps.
Singapore is not the only country that has warned Binance about operating without a license. A number of other regulators have issued warnings against the exchange, including those in the U.S., U.K., South Africa, Australia, Norway, Netherlands, Hong Kong, Germany, Italy, India, Malaysia, and Lithuania. In August, Binance said it was making regulatory compliance a top priority.
Zhao said last week: “We’re making a number of very substantial changes in organizational structures, product offerings, our internal processes, and the way we work with regulators … We’re in the process of setting up real offices, legal entities, a proper board, proper governance structures in most places.”