Crypto exchange Binance Singapore to close its doors in February
The Singaporean arm of crypto trading giant Binance has withdrawn its application for a crypto services permit in the city-state.
Binance Singapore, a subsidiary of global crypto exchange Binance in the city-state, has withdrawn its application for a crypto trading permit with the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and will shut down its operations on February 13, 2022.
“We always put our users first, so our decision to close Binance.sg was not taken lightly. Our immediate priority is to help our users in Singapore transition their holdings to other wallets or other third-party services,” said Binance Singapore CEO Richard Teng in an emailed statement.
Up until now, Binance Singapore has been operating under a temporary exemption in Singapore, according to Forbes, after the platform has filed for a license to provide crypto services with the MAS.
Soon, Binance Singapore plans to inform its users about the steps they’ll need to take as the platform shuts down via emails.
Going forward, Binance aims to turn its Singapore operations into a blockchain innovation hub focused on initiatives such as incubation programs, blockchain education, and investments.
Notably, just last week, Binance Singapore acquired an 18% stake in Hg Exchange, a local private securities exchange that was granted a Recognized Market Operator license by the MAS earlier this year.
UK plans still on the table
Meanwhile, Binance has doubled down on its plans to offer its products in the U.K. Last week, Changpeng Zhao, the exchange’s founder and CEO, revealed that Binance aims to become a registered service provider in the U.K. in six to 18 months.
“We’re fully re-engaged there. We’re making a number of very substantial changes in organizational structures, product offerings, our internal processes, and the way we work with regulators,” Zhao explained. “We want to continue to establish a presence in the U.K. and serve U.K. users in a fully licensed and fully compliant manner.”
To this end, the exchange has already onboarded a “number of ex-regulatory staff from the U.K. and a couple of hundred compliance people” to address the warning Binance received from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in June.
As CryptoSlate reported, the FCA’s notice was one of the first warnings that Binance received from regulators across the world, which prompted Zhao to take a more proactive approach to the platform’s compliance strategy.