The UK’s markets regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), has banned Binance exchange from operating in the country. The watchdog published a notice on June 26, noting that it had prohibited Binance Markets Limited (BML), which is part of Binance Group, from operating in the country. With this ban, the exchange needs to seek written consent from the regulator before offering any services in the UK.
According to the notice, the ban will take effect on June 30. The FCA needs Binance.com to add a visible notice on its website informing users that it is not allowed to offer any regulated activity within the country. However, this ban does not affect Binance Group as a whole, although no other entity in the organization holds any form of authorization in the country. Seeing as this ban is not overarching, the FCA will let Binance offer citizens crypto trading services through its website.
This news comes after Binance initiated plans to launch a marketplace in the UK. However, it withdrew its application to register with the FCA after failing to meet anti-money laundering requirements. According to an FCA spokesperson, the organization withdrew its 5MLD application on May 17 after engaging with the agency.
Binance claims its relationship with customers will not change
Despite this ban, Binance took to Twitter to assure its users that its relationship with its users had not changed. According to the exchange, BML is a separate legal entity and does not offer any products or services through Binance.com. Reportedly, Binance Group acquired BML in 2020 and has not yet launched its business in the UK or used its FCA regulatory permissions.
Binance went on to note that the UK FCA notice does not directly impact the services it offers through Binance.com.
Meanwhile, the FCA is regularly cautioning investors against investing in the crypto space. In the notice, the regulator said customers should be wary of online adverts that promise high returns on investments in the crypto space. In addition, the watchdog reiterated that most firms that advertise and sell investments in crypto are unauthorized.
While the FCA has banned Binance from running any regulated operations in the UK, it is not the only regulator that is clamping down on the exchange. In the past week, Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) warned that the exchange is operating in the country without its permission. The US Department of Justice (DoJ) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) was probing Binance for tax and money laundering information.