The Irish crypto service providers are struggling to get any banking help locally as cryptocurrencies are still unregulated in the country and the government has failed to formulate any laws based on the new EU directives.
However, the issue is not new, in fact, crypto service providers highlighted this same issue almost two years ago. Revealing that they had to open a foreign bank account since under existing laws banks were not willing to offer them any form of service.
According to the IrishTimes, a few local banks which did offer their service also terminated their contract citing unregulated markets and no laws governing virtual assets in the country. Boinnex, a bitcoin ATM operator, received a similar message recently when the AIB bank sent a letter revealing termination of services. Citing the delays in implementation of the latest 5th Anti-Money Laundering Directives (5AMLD) being implemented by the government.
Tierney, Boinnex founder expressed the frustration and said,
“Entering into a formal relationship with entities carrying out this type of business activity is outside of our risk appetite at this time.
We’ve been forced to get a banking partner abroad. A lot of companies in the space are in a similar situation.
Some of these foreign banks charge exorbitant fees as they know they’re the only show in town.”
The 5th AMLD directives were supposed to be implemented by the end of January but due to the upcoming general elections and the political parties failing to ensure a stable government in the times of crisis has led to continuous delays in the implementation of the new EU directives
Tierney also revealed that the crypto operators have been in touch with the central bank since 2018 and have also paid significant legal costs to ensure proper implementation of AMLD directives, but they did not offer any assurance. In fact, central banks noted that these crypto asset service providers are outside the supervisory framework.