Huobi, the world’s sixth-largest crypto exchange by trading volume, plans to scale back its services for Singaporeans only weeks after it has entirely halted its operations in China.
Huobi said the latest move is intended to bring its services in-line with its commitment to compliance. The crypto giant added that it seeks to comply with the regulatory standards issued by the Monetary Authority of Singapore.
Huobi Global will shut down all the accounts of its Singapore users by the end of Q1 2022. As of March 31, users in the city-state will no longer be able to perform trades or purchase cryptocurrencies on its global platform. Access to Huobi services for existing customers will be gradually phased out prior to that date.
“Huobi Global has always been committed to offering digital asset trading services while following all applicable laws. To comply with the laws of Singapore, we will have to include Singapore as a restricted jurisdiction. Regrettably, this means Huobi Global can no longer offer services to Singapore-based users,” the exchange said.
A former ‘big three’ platform in China, the exchange revealed earlier this week that it is moving its spot-trading business to Gibraltar as it takes steps to leave the mainland, where the country’s regulators intensified a crackdown on cryptocurrencies.
Huobi said its global platform has constantly evaluated its offerings to ensure they do not only meet customers’ demand, but also comply with local regulations. For context, Huobi’s Singapore entity has already submitted a license application to the country’s regulator. Operating under Huobi Technology Holdings Limited, its Singapore affiliate is currently exempt from holding a license until the review of its license application is completed.
“Huobi Singapore is here to stay for good…and we are excited to launch a new platform…committed to complying with both local and international regulations to provide a regulated and safe trading platform for retail and corporate users,” added CEO of Huobi Singapore Edward Chen.
The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) is updating its regulatory framework for crypto-related activities, including digital payments. The law cited in its statement, Payment Services Act (PSA), covers all crypto businesses and exchanges based in Singapore, bringing Huobi and its peers under anti-money laundering and counterterrorist-financing rules.
Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange platform, also responded to a warning by Singapore’s regulator in September by entirely halting its trading and payment services in the city-state.
The MAS said earlier that the country’s central bank found Binance to be in breach of local laws, adding to a mounting list of jurisdictions scrutinizing the influential crypto hub.