Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has banned the affiliate firm Binance Markets Limited (BML) from operating in the United Kingdom, according to Reuters. The Cayman Islands-based cryptocurrency exchange is among the largest in the world. News of it follows a similar trend of crypto crackdowns in other major global markets.
Binance was already in the process of opening a digital asset marketplace in England, but did not apply to register with the FCA because it neglected to comply with U.K. money laundering rules. As a result of the FCA’s ban, BML must now place a warning on its website and apps for U.K. users, according to NBC News. The message will read as follows:
“Binance Markets Limited is not permitted to undertake any regulated activity in the U.K. Due to the imposition of requirements by the FCA, Binance Markets Limited is not currently permitted to undertake any regulated activities without the prior written consent of the FCA.”
BML’s failure to officially register with the Financial Conduct Authority prohibits the firm from engaging in any “regulated activity,” but since the FCA does not regulate actual cryptocurrencies, British customers will still be able to buy and sell through Binance. The FCA nonetheless urged people to exercise caution around promises of high returns on cryptoasset investments.
Britain is not alone in its efforts to curb cryptocurrency exchange. Japan issued its own warning against Binance last week, and China has recently shut down Bitcoin mines in several of the country’s highest hashrate-yielding regions.
All cite concerns around the ease with which crypto lends itself to use in illicit financial practices such as money laundering, and the negative climate impact of Bitcoin mining’s power consumption and carbon emissions output, according to The New York Times.