Crypto Billionaire Changpeng Zhao To Cease Some Binance Services In Singapore Amid Regulatory Scrutiny
Binance—controlled by billionaire Changpeng Zhao—said it will discontinue offering some of its services in Singapore after regulators announced last week that the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange may be breaching rules in the city-state.
“Binance constantly evaluates its product and service offerings to remain compliant with local regulations,” Binance said Sunday in a statement on its website.
The company said it will cease offering Singapore dollar trading pairs and payment options from Friday and the app for these products will be removed from the Apple and Google Play stores. “Users are advised to complete all related peer-to-peer trades and remove related trade advertisements by Thursday, to avoid potential trading disputes,” it said.
Binance said it doesn’t operate any official Telegram and other online communication channels in Singapore.
“Our aim is to create a sustainable ecosystem around blockchain technology and digital assets,” the company said. “Binance welcomes developments to our industry’s regulatory framework as they pose opportunities for the market players to have greater collaboration with the regulators. We are committed to working constructively in policy-making that seeks to benefit every user.”
Binance and other cryptocurrency players have been facing increasing regulatory scrutiny worldwide. On September 2, the Monetary Authority of Singapore said the company may have breached the Payment Services Act for providing payment services to, and soliciting such business from Singapore residents without an appropriate license.
Underscoring the growing importance of Singapore for the cryptocurrency exchange, Binance Asia Services, which operates Binance.sg, recently submitted a license application under the Payment Services Act, according to MAS. The application is currently under review.
Last month, Binance appointed former Singapore Exchange executive Richard Teng as CEO of its Singapore affiliate. “We are delighted to have Richard leading the Binance Singapore team in securing more strategic partnerships, fostering innovation and furthering the local cryptocurrency ecosystem in Singapore,” Zhao, founder and CEO of Binance, said in a statement.
With a net worth of $1.9 billion, Zhao was ranked No. 22 on the list of Singapore’s 50 Richest people that was published last month. The Chinese-Canadian coder—who has been living in the city-state since 2019—cut his teeth building high-frequency trading systems for Wall Street’s flash boys. In 2020, Binance reached $2 trillion in total trading volume, and its Binance Coin is now the world’s fourth-biggest cryptocurrency by market cap, according to CoinGecko.