The African exchange, which opened in October 2018, will close all trading services by November the 11th
The crypto exchange giant Binance has announced that it is closing all trading services by November 11th in Binance Uganda after it halted the deposits last week. Earlier, the company had also announced the shuttering of Binance Jersey, its crypto exchange located in the British Isles
The African exchange was first set up in October 2018 and represented the company’s efforts to capitalise on cryptocurrency interest in a country where many of the families rely on cross-border remittances but are not able to get bank accounts. The world’s largest crypto exchange was planning to use it as a starting point to reach other citizens across Africa.
Users of the exchange who are from Uganda are now being asked to switch to transacting on Binance.com, which has started accepting deposits of Ugandan shillings through Mobile Money, bank transfers, and credit or debit cards.
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Chenpeng Zhao explained that the consolidation of its Jersey and Uganda exchanges was a “business decision”, since fiat deposits of Ugandan shillings have been added to the global exchange of the company alongside the bank transfers.
“All the features that Binance Uganda provides [are] now covered by Binance.com together with our fiat channel partners. There’s a very minimal number of users on there, so it doesn’t make sense for us to maintain two platforms”. Zhao explained.
So far, Binance appears to be steadfast with its other local exchanges, such as Binance Singapore. It also recently announced the launch of Binance Turkey.
In response to those who suspect that Binance was using its US affiliate to evade regulations, Zhao clarified that the company was on good terms with regulators.
“Some people misinterpreted that as maybe we got into trouble with the regulator locally or something. And that’s not the case. We do have good relationships with regulators in both areas that we have an exchange winding down. It’s just a business decision”, he said.
“It’s a loss center for us because it’s not generating enough money to be profitable and everybody uses Binance.com anyway”, Zhao added.
The CEO has referred to Binance Uganda as an “independent exchange” in the past. After a 2019 security breach that led to $40 million in losses, Binance Uganda assured users that the funds “are safe and segregated from Binance.com”.
Binance Uganda once again made an independent decision in September of this year, sparking discussions when it delisted the Binance Coin (BNB) after claiming that it did not meet its trading standard.