Crypto exchange Binance to suspend sterling transfers

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Binance will halt its sterling deposits and withdrawals, a company spokesman said on Tuesday, a month after the exchange ceased dollar transfers.

Binance was informed by its partner for transfers in pounds, Paysafe (LON:PAYS), which would discontinue its services from May 22, the spokesman said, affecting all of the firm’s clients. Transfers in the British currency for new users stopped on Monday, he said.

“Binance will ensure that affected users can continue to access their GBP balances,” the spokesperson said, adding that the change “affects less than 1% of Binance users.”

The world’s largest cryptocurrency platform, with more than 128 million customers, did not give details on the number of users affected by the measure.

Paysafe did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment. The company offers the service through the British payments network Faster Payments, which also did not immediately comment.

The cessation of transfers in pounds, first reported by crypto news outlet The Block, comes after Binance last month suspended all dollar bank transfers, amid a growing crackdown on cryptocurrencies by US authorities.

A spokesperson for Skrill, the unit of Paysafe that works with Binance, told cryptocurrency website Decrypt that “the UK’s regulatory environment in relation to cryptocurrencies is too challenging to offer this service at this time, so this is a prudent decision on our part taken out of an abundance of caution.”

Britain’s financial watchdog said last year it lacked the powers to prevent Binance from accessing the fast payments network through PaySafe.

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