Binance's Activities Are Illegal in Nigeria, Securities Regulator Says

The regulator also ordered all crypto platform providers to stop reaching out to Nigerian investors.

AccessTimeIconJul 31, 2023 at 9:15 a.m. UTC

Crypto exchange Binance's activities are illegal in Nigeria, the country's Securities and Exchange Commission said in a Friday notice that also ordered all crypto platform providers to stop soliciting Nigerian citizens.

The SEC said the post reiterated a June 9 warning that referred to a company called Binance Nigeria Ltd. Binance told CoinDesk at the time that the company was not affiliated with it. In Friday's notice, the SEC specifically referred to the crypto exchange's website.

"The commission again reiterates that the activities of Binance, and any such other platform through which the company solicits investors is neither registered nor regulated by the commission and its operations in Nigeria are therefore illegal," the SEC said. The regulator ordered all platform providers affiliated with crypto to stop reaching out to Nigerian investors.

The SEC said last year it views all crypto as securities. The country has been processing crypto exchange applications to register on a trial basis, but will not complete registration until an agreement is reached with the central bank, which has blocked local financial institutions from interacting with crypto services providers.

The Commission also warned the public, in more general terms, "to be wary of investing in crypto assets and other products offered or operated by entities not registered or regulated by the Commission."

"By this circular, all platform providers, making such solicitations, are hereby directed to immediately stop soliciting Nigerian investors in any form whatsoever," it said.

Binance was not able to respond to CoinDesk's request for comment before press time.

Edited by Sheldon Reback.


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Camomile Shumba

Camomile Shumba is a CoinDesk regulatory reporter based in the UK. She previously worked as an intern for Business Insider and Bloomberg News. She does not currently hold value in any digital currencies or projects.