Changpeng Zhao, CEO of Binance.
REUTERS/Darrin Zammit Lupi
Binance will discontinue Chinese yuan trading on December 31, it said on Wednesday.
The crypto exchange said it would run checks to ensure users in mainland China can only make withdrawals.
Binance says it has been blocked in China since 2017, and doesn’t engage in local exchange business.
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Binance will end the use of the Chinese yuan on its peer-to-peer platform, in the crypto exchange’s latest move to cooperate with regulators in China.
The company, which is one of the world’s largest exchanges, is set to discontinue support for the Chinese currency on December 31 this year, it said in a statement Wednesday.
Binance added that people in mainland China will be allowed to only make withdrawals, redeem, or close positions.
“At the same time, Binance will conduct an inventory of platform users,” the crypto exchange said. “If the platform finds users in mainland China, their corresponding accounts will be switched to the ‘withdrawal only’ mode.”
Relevant users will be notified of the restriction to withdrawals via email seven days before the transition.
In late September, Chinese authorities declared all crypto-related transactions illegal and banned foreign exchanges from providing services to the country’s residents. Almost immediately, Binance said it would no longer accept registrations linked to Chinese mobile phone numbers.
Chinese crypto exchange Huobi said too it would stop new user registrations by mainland customers, and retire existing accounts by the end of this year. Two other Asia-focused crypto exchanges, Matrixport and Mexc, are also following by cutting off existing users.
Beijing’s recent hostile stance against towards crypto didn’t come as a surprise, after authorities imposed their first related “ban” in 2013.
Since then, China has been attempting to choke off the digital asset sector via various restrictions that target a range of market segments. In 2017, local crypto exchanges were ordered to end operations.
A Binance spokesperson told Insider that the crypto exchange has been blocked in China since 2017 and local users haven’t been able to access its website.
“Binance does not currently hold exchange operations in China,” the spokesperson said, and added that the company takes its compliance obligations “very seriously.”
News of crypto-related bans from China has not impacted the adoption rate of cryptocurrencies, according to Freddie Williams, a sales trader at UK-based digital asset broker GlobalBlock.
“It has not prevented adoption of bitcoin and digital assets from continuing their upward trend,” Williams said.