Malaysia’s financial watchdog says Binance and eToro don’t comply with the country’s securities law; it’s unlikely to make much of a difference to their local operations, however.
- The Malaysian Securities Commission (SC) added exchanges Binance and eToro, which offer a series of crypto-based products, to a list of companies not permitted to operate in the country.
- The regulator blacklists companies that offer financial services without its approval or authorization.
- It’s not clear when the SC added Binance and eToro to its non grata list. An official told CoinDesk that this information was not readily available.
- Binance tested its newly launched debit card in Malaysia. The country’s currency, the ringgit, has been supported in Binance’s peer-to-peer platform since March.
- In May, the SC told local media that eToro was not authorized to operate in the country and was liable for a $2.4 million fine.
- Being blacklisted by the SC, however, is unlikely to disrupt either Binance’s or eToro’s local operations.
- The SC does not have the authority to block websites – that rests with the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC), which so far has said nothing on the matter.
- An eToro spokesperson told CoinDesk the company’s Asian operations are all regulated by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission; Malaysian clients are effectively onboarded on an entity that falls out of the SC’s jurisdiction.
- Binance has resisted calls to publicly divulge where it's headquartered.
- Bobby Ong, COO of price aggregator CoinGecko, which is based in Malaysia, said the SC may have fired a warning shot as Binance did not get the proper licenses before it started offering a ringgit gateway for its peer-to-peer marketplace.
- Binance is one of the most high profile exchanges, but Ong said there were many other unregulated p2p ones operating in Malaysia.
- Binance did not respond to numerous requests for comment.