India Blocks Access to Foreign Crypto Exchanges Including Binance

India blocks access to foreign crypto exchanges like Finance, Kucoin and OKX for not following Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) rules.

By Sunil Sonkar
2 Min Read
India Blocks Access to Foreign Crypto Exchanges Including Binance

In a recent move, India has blocked access to web platforms of foreign crypto exchanges and virtual asset service providers. Leading exchanges like Finance, Kucoin and OKX are now inaccessible. The decision was made because the crypto platforms didn’t follow the rules given by the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU).

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Apple took out apps like Binance, Kucoin and OKX from its store because they didn’t follow the anti-money laundering rules, as told by the finance ministry’s FIU. The National Daily suggests that the Android versions of these apps might also face removal.

On December 28, the FIU issued notices to Binance and eight other cryptocurrency exchanges, expressing concerns about their unauthorized operations and non-compliance with anti-money laundering laws. The FIU provided a two-week response window, which lapsed on January 12. After that, the FIU suggested stopping people from going to the websites of these platforms and the government did just that.

Edul Patel, CEO of Mudrex, an Indian Crypto Exchange, responded to the FIU’s notices, stating that proactive steps were taken, advising investors to transfer their funds to compliant platforms. Patel stressed that it is crucial to keep your money in places that follow FIU rules, so you can take legal action if there is any fraud.

Think tank Esya Centre estimates that global crypto exchanges cause an annual tax leakage of nearly Rs 3,000 crore to the central exchequer due to the absence of registered entities in India.

Stopping people from using foreign crypto websites is supposed to help the crypto sites in our own country. Recent government restrictions and renewed interest in digital assets after the US SEC’s ETF approval have led to increased registration activity on domestic exchanges.

Sumit Gupta, co-founder of CoinDCX, sees the recent FIU notices attracting more investors to Indian exchanges, creating a level playing field.

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