PayPal to Stop Crypto Purchases in UK Until 2024

The company said the pause is due to the U.K. financial regulator’s upcoming stricter rules, which include the travel rule to combat money laundering set to take effect Sept. 1.

AccessTimeIconAug 16, 2023 at 4:20 p.m. UTC
Updated Aug 17, 2023 at 6:14 p.m. UTC

Payments giant PayPal will temporarily pause crypto purchases in the United Kingdom until early 2024, the company said Wednesday, citing stricter rules by the country’s financial regulator.

The company said customers who have previously purchased crypto assets through their PayPal account can keep them on the platform or sell them at any time. However, starting Oct. 1, the ability to make new purchases will be disabled.

“We're taking this measure in response to new rules enacted by the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) that require crypto firms to implement additional steps before customers can purchase crypto,” PayPal said in a statement.

Britain’s financial regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), is introducing stricter measures against money laundering through the use of crypto to align with the Financial Action Task Force's "Travel Rule" on Sept. 1. The FCA is also expected to enact stricter rules for advertising crypto in the country later this year.

“We remain deeply committed to our compliance obligations and PayPal consistently works closely with regulators around the world to adhere to applicable rules and regulations in the markets in which we operate,” PayPal said.

PayPal has accelerated its footprint in crypto in recent weeks, specifically in the United States. The most significant development for the company is its recent launch of a stablecoin, PayPal USD (PYUSD), which the payments giant announced earlier this month.

Oliver Knight contributed reporting to this story.

CORRECTION (Aug. 17, 13:19 UTC): Clarifies in text and sub-headline that the Travel Rule for money laundering, not advertising, is set to take effect on Sept. 1.

Edited by Aoyon Ashraf and Sandali Handagama.


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