China’s Largest Cryptocurrency Exchanges Suspend All New User Registrations

In response, exchange tokens have taken a hit, with BNB dropping the least by 12% while OKB tumbled 26% and HT 28%.

China’s largest cryptocurrency exchange Huobi has suspended all new registrations for domestic users in response to China reiterating its stance on cryptocurrency trading.

The exchange operator has stopped letting customers use mainland China mobile numbers to register new accounts. While new sign-ups are still available for Hong Kong users, mainland China is not an option any longer for new-account creation.

In June, when the China ban first reared its ugly head this year and announced a crackdown on leverage trading and mining, Huobi banned existing Chinese users from trading derivatives.

Amidst this, Huobi also announced this week that it has entered into a non-legally binding memorandum of understanding (the “MOU”) with the Kyrgyz Republic, commonly known as Kyrgyzstan.

This suspension of users from mainland China comes after the umpteenth time People’s Bank of China said Friday that “Virtual currency-related business activities are illegal financial activities.”

This time, the notice specifically said that people in China that aid offshore exchanges that provide crypto services to the Chinese may be investigated.

As some speculate, this move could be China trying to deviate attention from nearly $100 billion printed by PBOC just this week amidst the retail estate giant Evergrande debacle. Besides fiat devaluation, the regulators may have taken this step to dissuade Chinese citizens from using crypto to move capital out of the country.

Users can still register on OKEx and Binance using mainland China numbers, for now.

The prices of these exchange tokens, however, have taken a hit. BNB dropped the least by 12%, while OKB tumbled 26% and HT 28%.

Both OKEx and Huobi have moved out of China and suspended the Chinese yuan fiat on-ramp, but they continue to have strong roots in the country while Binance offers Chinese yuan over-the-counter (OTC) services.

Binance RMB trading platform actually added a new disclaimer reading, “Binance C2C is provided by, and related services and responsibilities are borne by it,” noted Wu Blockchain.

This statement, however, reportedly appeared before Friday, which aligns with the fact that PBOC’s latest notice was dated Sep 15.

Earlier this week, Binance had also said that it de-platformed the sanctioned Russian crypto exchange Suex earlier this year before it was blacklisted by the US Treasury Department. As an industry leader, the exchange said it is “committed to continue working with regulators across the globe.”

As we reported this week, the Biden Administration sanctioned Suex, a “parasite” exchange that didn’t directly custody its clients’ cryptos, for its role in processing ransomware proceeds. This was the first time the Treasury blacklisted a crypto exchange which bans all US citizens from engaging in transactions with them.

“We de-platformed these accounts based on internal safeguards,” Binance said, adding, it shared all the information, including addresses, with the appropriate authorities.

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