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Binance faces blockade from Philippine SEC

The regulator said it has taken steps to allow enough time for Philippine investors to exit Binance's platform.

A philippine securities regulator talks on a podium announcing that it will be blocking a crypto exchange from the country.

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The Philippine Securities and Exchange Commission (PSEC) has started to block Binance’s online presence, the world’s largest cryptocurrency trading platform. The SEC cited the exchange’s lack of necessary licenses to offer investment and trading services in the country.

According to notes cited in the announcement, the Commission En Banc approved the filing of a formal request with the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) for assistance in blocking Binance’s website and its auxiliary web pages. The SEC found that Binance had offered an investment and trading platform without securing the required license from the SEC, as mandated by the Securities Regulation Code (SRC).

“The SEC has identified the aforementioned platform and concluded that the public’s continued access to these websites/apps poses a threat to the security of the funds of investing Filipinos,” said Emilio B. Aquino, Chairperson at the Philippine SEC.

The regulator previously said in December 2023 that it was preparing necessary steps to block and ban Binance from the Philippines due to its non-compliance, a factor that the regulator had called out a month before it issued the timeline. According to the regulator, it has taken necessary steps to ensure that the Filipino investing public has enough time to exit the platform and reposition their portfolio.

For its part, Binance has continued pushing its compliance efforts since entering a $4.3 billion plea deal with the US Department of Justice. The plea deal also included the resignation of Changpeng Zhao, its founder and former CEO. Zhao pled guilty to all charges and has since been banned from going outside US jurisdiction.

Binance is regarded in the crypto industry as the largest centralized exchange in terms of volume. The exchange has an average daily trading volume of $65 billion, facilitating trades across 402 supported cryptocurrencies with over 183 million users globally.

Binance’s regulatory woes have been spreading, with the exchange recently clashing with Nigerian authorities. Earlier this month, Binance temporarily suspended withdrawals on the Solana network.

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