Binance has announced that it will stop accepting new UK users as of 5pm today, 16 October.
This move is in response to new rules by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) on the exchange’s local partner, Rebuildingsociety.com Ltd (REBS).
On 10 October, the FCA took action against Binance’s application for financial promotions compliance in the UK, just days after Binance revealed its intention to collaborate with the peer-to-peer lender Rebuilding Society in a bid to reach compliance with the UK’s new financial promotions framework.
According to the statement: “The UK Financial Promotions Regime for qualifying cryptoassets came into effect on 8 October 2023. These new rules allow unregulated overseas firms, like Binance, to promote their cryptoasset businesses in the UK by engaging with a firm authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority (‘FCA’). We engaged FCA authorised firm, Rebuildingsociety.com Ltd (‘REBS’), to review and approve our UK financial promotions in compliance with the new rules.
“On 10 October, the FCA imposed legally-binding requirements on REBS, which meant that REBS was no longer able to approve financial promotions and with effect from 5pm on 11 October 2023 REBS had to withdraw any existing approvals of financial promotions on behalf of any cryptoasset businesses (including Binance).
“Binance is currently looking for a new FCA authorised approver. However, there will be some temporary restrictions coming into effect on our Platform… during the period until Binance onboards with a new FCA authorised approver and has its financial promotions reapproved.”
They add: “We are working closely with the FCA to ensure that our users are not harmed by these developments and are looking to find another suitable FCA authorised firm to approve our financial promotions as soon as possible.”
The FCA and crypto
The FCA’s updated rules for financial promotions of crypto assets, which came into force on 8 October, restrict crypto promotions on various platforms, such as websites, social media, and online advertising.
As per the FCA, crypto firms that aren’t registered and fail to comply with these promotion guidelines could violate section 21 of the UK’s Financial Services and Markets Act 2000. A breach can be classified as a criminal offense, leading to penalties like a two-year prison sentence, an unlimited fine, or both.