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Crypto Exchange Binance Drops Abu Dhabi License Application as Global Needs Shift

Crypto exchange Binance has withdrawn its application for a license in Abu Dhabi. “When assessing our global licensing needs, we decided this application was not necessary,” a Binance spokesperson stated, adding that the company plans to continue to work with regulators “to provide world-class services and offerings in the Middle East and beyond.”

Binance Says ‘This Application Was Not Necessary’

Cryptocurrency exchange Binance has reportedly withdrawn its application with Abu Dhabi’s financial regulator. A spokesperson for Binance said on Thursday:

When assessing our global licensing needs, we decided this application was not necessary.

According to Binance’s website, Abu Dhabi-based Binance (AD) Ltd. received conditional financial services permission from the Financial Services Regulatory Authority (FSRA) on Nov. 15 last year to provide crypto custody services. The regulator’s website details: “Binance (AD) Limited is not permitted to deal with retail clients, as defined in the FSRA’s Conduct of Business Rulebook (COBS).” The crypto exchange noted that meeting the conditions required by the regulator will allow Binance (AD) to commence providing custody services to professional clients. The FSRA oversees all financial activities within the Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) international financial center.

Last month, Binance founder Changpeng Zhao (CZ) resigned as CEO after pleading guilty to violating U.S. anti-money laundering laws, and the crypto exchange agreed to pay over $4.3 billion as part of the settlement with U.S. authorities. The Binance spokesperson claimed that the decision to withdraw the Abu Dhabi license application was “unrelated” to the U.S. settlement. Zhao is a citizen of the UAE.

This year, Binance withdrew from a licensing process in Germany, retracted from Cyprus, and announced its exit from the Netherlands. The decision to withdraw from Cyprus was explained as a strategic move to concentrate on fewer regulated entities in the EU, with a focus on France, Italy, and Spain, in anticipation of the European Union’s crypto asset regulations rollout. The crypto firm has also been ordered by financial regulators to cease operations in Belgium.

Moreover, Binance canceled the regulatory authorization it received in the U.K. and announced the intention to divest its business in Russia. Additionally, regulators in Australia revoked the financial services license of Binance’s derivatives business. In the Philippines, the securities regulator initiated the process of blocking Binance last week.

The Binance spokesperson emphasized on Thursday that the crypto exchange would continue to work with regulators “to provide world-class services and offerings in the Middle East and beyond.”

What do you think about Binance withdrawing its application for a license in Abu Dhabi? Let us know in the comments section below.

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