Swiss Regulator FINMA Blacklists Crypto Islamic Bank Broker for Claiming Shariah-Compliant Product
The Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) has recently updated its blacklist. The list includes several companies that are suspected of conducting financial activities that are not legal or regulated. Now, the agency has decided to blacklist a crypto broker known as Crypto Islamic Bank as well.
According to the FINMA, the broker offers several crypto services which include mining, wallets, trading, asset management, and others. However, the company shows no license for actually operating in all these markets in any of the jurisdictions that it claims to be regulated.
This has raised a huge red flag at the FINMA and the agency has decided to blacklist the company.
What this means is that the company is not registered to offer its services in Switzerland, though, not that the company is exactly a scam. People in other countries may legally participate in the company, however, it is hard to be sure as the company does not show any kind of legal guarantee whatsoever.
The company refers to its “global offices” but it does not make it clear in which countries it is active and states nothing about its regulation.
The Shariah And The Blockchain
The Crypto Islamic Bank affirms that it is a Shariah-compliant company. The Shariah, in case you do not know, is the Islamic law, which derives from the Quran, the holy book of Muslims. The religious book is followed by over 1.8 Muslims all around the world and it dictates many aspects of daily life.
Because there has been a big debate on whether cryptos are legitimate Islamic investments in the Shariah, some companies are trying to enter the market by saying that they are fully Shariah-compliant.
One of the main aspects that cause controversies is that the Islamic law forbids speculation and a lot of people consider Bitcoin investing to be speculation, as you hope that the prices will get higher. It also prohibits fees for money loans.
Not being compliant with the Shariah can cause several problems to a company that wants to operate in the Islamic world, which comprises a good part of the Middle East, Asia, and Africa.
FINMA And The Blacklist
FINMA is known for being very severe with its blacklist. Many companies were shut down in the country last year after they were properly blacklisted by the organization. At the time of this report, the FINMA was already looking at twelve other cases that raised red flags.
The agency considers it illegal for any company that does have the proper licenses to trade cryptos in Switzerland or for Swiss investors. Because of this, any company trying to offer something for its citizens has to be regulated.