The Philippines’ Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has commenced the process of restricting access to Binance, the world’s largest crypto exchange. The move follows Binance’s chief stepping down last week, having pleaded guilty to violating U.S. anti-money laundering laws.
The SEC asserts that Binance’s operator lacks registration as a corporation in the Philippines, highlighting an absence of the required licence and authority for the sale or offering of securities. The regulatory action aims to curtail Binance’s access within the Philippines.
In a statement released on Nov. 28, the SEC outlined that the restriction on access will be effective within three months from the advisory issuance. This timeframe allows Filipino users an opportunity to withdraw their investments from the crypto exchange.
The SEC has not only targeted user access but has also urged major tech players, including Alphabet’s Google and Facebook parent Meta, to prohibit online advertisements from Binance within the Philippines. The regulator warns of potential criminal liability for those promoting or facilitating investments on the platform.
The recent departure of Binance’s former chief, Changpeng Zhao, stems from a guilty plea regarding the willful failure to maintain an effective anti-money laundering program. The SEC’s actions underscore a commitment to enforcing regulatory compliance within the crypto sphere.