FTX's Regional Crypto Exchanges Slowly Reopen Withdrawals

The exchange's Japan and Turkey subsidiaries are slowly allowing customers to withdraw small amounts to their bank accounts.

AccessTimeIconNov 11, 2022 at 7:21 a.m. UTC
Updated Nov 11, 2022 at 10:25 p.m. UTC

FTX Japan said it resumed yen withdrawals after Japanese regulator, the Financial Services Agency (FSA), expressed concern over the crypto exchange's health. Elsewhere, FTX Turkey said it was working on sending all Turkish lira balances to its customers.

FTX Japan made the announcement in a short statement on its website Friday. FTX Turkey communicated its message in a Friday tweet. On Thursday, the Turkish subsidiary said it would automatically convert user balances into Turkish lira at a 1:1 ratio.

Japan's FSA ordered FTX Japan to enter "close-only" mode on Thursday, meaning users should be able to wind up existing positions but not initiate new ones. In the order, the regulator noted that the exchange had halted withdrawals without specifying a date for reinstatement and that it continued to enlist new customers.

Under the circumstances, the regulator said it was uncertain about the company's health. It also required FTX Japan to stop accepting new customers and halt the exchange business.

These regional subsidiaries of FTX are wholly owned by FTX's 'mothership' in Antigua, FTX Trading Ltd, and license FTX's technology stack in exchange for royalty payments sent back to the Antigua-based parent. The regional exchanges are compliant with local laws surrounding securities, and thus offer a limited selection of tokens (similar to Binance's regional subsidiaries). Because of this compliance they can access local payment rails meaning that traders do not have to use expensive and slow SWIFT transfers to deposit or withdraw funds.

Some traders are known to treat these as a payment gateway for buying stablecoins, before sending them off to the main exchange for full-featured trading.

Withdrawals on FTX International remained paused as of Asian hours on Friday.


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Sheldon Reback

Sheldon Reback is a CoinDesk news editor based in London. He owns a small amount of ether.

Shaurya Malwa

Shaurya is the Deputy Managing Editor for the Data & Tokens team, focusing on decentralized finance, markets, on-chain data, and governance across all major and minor blockchains.

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