Crypto Exchange Binance Confirms Closure in Ontario, Canada

The most famous cryptocurrency exchange Binance has confirmed to the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) that it will no longer open accounts for new customers in the Canadian province of Ontario.

Discontinue trading of already existing accounts

The industry’s largest exchange has also pledged to cease trading for existing Ontario-based accounts. It will provide fee waivers and refunds to certain users.

These pledges are accompanied by several acknowledgments from Binance about the realities of the exchange’s Ontario operations. The commitments have been sent to the OSC. The exchange has acknowledged that Ontario investors could continue to trade on its platform after allegedly “restrictions were put in place.”

Importantly, Binance’s commitment to the OSC represents a “legally enforceable” commitment from the exchange to the regulator going forward. The OSC said the following in a statement yesterday:

“This commitment represents a legally enforceable commitment from Binance to the OSC. The OSC reserves the right to take enforcement action against Binance for any past, present or future violations of the Ontario Securities Act. It concerns infringements that do not arise from the events described in the commitment.”

The move comes after a series of squabbles with the Canadian regulator, the story of which began in the summer of 2021.

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Binance’s relationship with the OSC

In June 2021, Binance announced that it would withdraw its services from Ontario. The exchange advised users to close active positions by December 31, 2021.

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However, on December 29, 2021, the exchange informed local users that the exchange had reportedly been granted permission to continue operating in the Canadian province. In Binance’s commitment to the OSC, the exchange “now acknowledges that this was not correct.”

In response, the OSC said that no entity in the Binance group of companies had any form of securities registration in the province. “This remains the case,” the OSC added in yesterday’s statement.

Per Binance’s commitment to the OSC, on December 31, 2021, the exchange confirmed to the regulator that trading restrictions were in effect for Ontario accounts. On January 1, 2022, the exchange also advised Ontario users that trading access was restricted. The same goes for a new onboarding.

Binance also said that the customer service team “tweeted incorrect information.” An Ontario user was advised that after January 1, 2022, they could trade as usual if their account was already open.” The exchange also acknowledges that this was incorrect.

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