Binance to Exit Dutch Market in July After Licensing Drawback
By Adedapo Adesanya
Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, is leaving the Netherlands after failing to get the regulator in the country to issue a virtual asset service provider (VASP) license, which attests that it meets anti-money laundering (AML) guidelines.
As of July 17, Dutch residents can only withdraw their funds from the platform, according to a statement from the exchange.
“We regret to announce that Binance is leaving the Dutch market,” Binance said in a statement on its website.
“This, unfortunately, means that no new users residing in the Netherlands will be accepted as of today. Starting from 17 July 2023, existing Dutch resident users will only be able to withdraw their assets from the Binance platform. No further purchases, trades or deposits will be possible. We encourage those users to take appropriate action by withdrawing assets from their accounts.”
Binance said it has been in a comprehensive registration application process as a virtual asset service provider with the Dutch regulator.
“Although Binance explored many alternative avenues to service Dutch residents in compliance with Dutch regulations, unfortunately, this has not resulted in a VASP registration in the Netherlands at this time.”
The exchange said it will continue to engage with Dutch regulators.
However, existing Dutch resident users are being sent an email with comprehensive information about what this means for their accounts, any assets they currently have on the Binance platform, and any steps they need to take.
“While Binance is disappointed that this has become necessary, it will continue to engage productively and transparently with Dutch regulators,” it noted in a statement on its website seen by Business Post.
Binance is already facing anti-money laundering complaints in Europe, particularly in France, Italy, Spain, Poland, Sweden, and Lithuania.
Two days ago, the exchange said it planned to leave Cyprus to focus on becoming fully compliant with the new European Union rules on crypto-assets (MiCA).
Last week, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) sued Binance, its founder Changpeng Zhao, and the operator of its purportedly independent US exchange.