Bitcoin OTC Service Suspends Trading Citing China Pressure

China-based BitKan has announced it will freeze over-the-counter trading on its cryptocurrency service, citing pressure from local regulators.

Sep 12, 2017 at 4:36 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 13, 2021 at 6:55 a.m. UTC

BitKan, an over-the-counter (OTC) trading service for cryptocurrencies in China, announced today that it will suspend operations amid growing scrutiny from domestic regulators.

In the news post, BitKan said it would suspend its trading service beginning at 12:00 a.m. on September 14, a notable development given rumors that OTC markets may be excluded from a possible ban. The suspension will affect both its Web-based and mobile users, but withdrawals and deposits will remain active, according to the firm.

The statement noted that the suspension is a result of an announcement published by People’s Bank of China on September 4 in which seven local financial regulators announced a ban on illegal initial coin offering (ICO) fundraising and trading activities.

BitKan's statement explains:

"After the suspension of the OTC service, BitKan’s wallets will continue functioning normally. Deposition and withdrawal of funds will not be affected."

The service did not say when – or whether – it would resume its OTC trading. However, the disclosure nonetheless highlights the escalating impact the Chinese government's recent policy moves have had on the local cryptocurrency industry.

In the past few days, reports have emerged claiming that China is on the cusp of a blanket ban on exchange-based cryptocurrency trading. Yet thus far, major exchanges in China have all said that no official notice has been received from regulators.

BitKan did not respond to inquiries for further comment.

Crosswalk sign image via Shutterstock

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