In 2017, crypto exchanges were banned in China, and Binance left the country. Or not? According to documents owned by The Financial Times, Binance has maintained ties with China since 2017. There were also personnel active in the country and operations were kept running.
Binance offices and staff in China
According to The Financial Times, there was still an office of Binance operating within the Chinese borders at the end of 2019. A Chinese bank was also used to pay staff in China. This is very remarkable since Binance announced in 2017 that it would stop all activity in the country.
In addition, it seems that Binance was actively trying to hide this activity in China. In reports from 2019, it can be read that employees of the crypto exchange had to keep the activity in the country secret.
“Remember: in public we have offices in Malta, Singapore and Uganda. Please do not confirm offices in China.”
Since this week, Binance has been embroiled in a lawsuit with the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). The CFTC is suing the exchange for allegedly violating several trading and derivatives laws. There would also be market manipulation on the platform.
The CFTC indictment alleges that Binance obscured office locations. In addition, the CFTC also believes that Binance concealed “the identities of entities active on the platform and their locations.”
Bitcoin exchange denies all accusations
A spokesperson responds to The Financial Times on behalf of Binance and firmly denies all allegations.
“(Binance) does not operate in China, nor do we have any technology, including servers and data, in China. We reject any contradictory claims. The Chinese, like any other government, has no access to Binance data except when we respond to lawful and legitimate requests from authorities.”
The only active branch in China that the company would have relationships with is a call center to serve customers in Mandarin, the most widely spoken language in China.