The cryptocurrency exchange Bittrex has terminated operations in 31 countries, which include Venezuela and Zimbabwe. The reasons cited for these terminations include the bases of regulatory uncertainty in these jurisdictions. Some of the nations on the list are going through political turmoil and socio-economic challenges.
Bittrex international, which is a global trading platform that is managed by the Seattle-based digital asset exchange, has informed its clients that reside in the affected countries that they will no longer be able to offer them their services. The main reason for this decision has been cited to be an unstable regulatory environment within those jurisdictions, as the company explained in an announcement that was published on its website last Friday.
The announcement reads in part “all trading and account access for these impacted customers will be halted on Tuesday, October 29. Users have been requested to withdraw their coins and tokens from the platform before the deadline. in order to do that, they will have to log into their Bittrex international account, click on Holdings, search for their wallets and click the withdrawal button.” The exchange has warned Traders that they won’t be able to withdraw their balance if it’s below a certain threshold. The exchange continued to say in the announcement that “minimum withdrawal for all coins must be greater than three times the fee.”
The decision by Bittrex to stop exchange operations mostly concerned customers in developing countries. Many of these markets are situated in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East and include the crisis-hit Zimbabwe, Uganda, and Pakistan. Bosnia is the only European country that made the list. Crypto traders in economically struggling Venezuela are also among those that will not be able to access the exchange services in the future.
This move that affects its international trading platform follows Bittrex delisting dozens of coins and tokens this summer that were previously available to US-based traders. Even though the exchange details that a major criterion is considered in such cases was the lack of interest in the project, regulatory pressure in the United States has been cited for having a major role in the decision.
Evolving regulatory standards and other compliance issues have been listed among the key factors in its official token removal policy, which the company takes into account when determining whether to release or remove a market. For instance, April this year saw the New York State Department of financial services ordering Bittrex to seize operations after rejecting its application for a bitlicence.
International sanctions have also played a role in business decisions of this magnitude in the crypto industry. Towards the conclusion of last year, reports indicated that users in leading digital asset exchange, Binance had been cut off in certain countries, including Iran, Belarus, Serbia, Bosnia, Myanmar, and other restricted jurisdictions. Some of these are on the sanction list of the United Nations Security Council and the United States treasury department’s office of foreign assets control.