Chilean crypto exchange granted license in Estonia

South American cryptocurrency exchange CryptoMarkets has obtained a license from Estonian authorities. The exchange offers its services mainly in its home base of Chile, Argentina and Brazil and will be seeking to expand into the European market. It chose to apply for licensing in the European country as regulations there are way more advanced in comparison to South America.

CryptoMarkets is based in Santiago, Chile’s capital offering trading in BTC, EOS, Ether and Stellar and supporting the Chilean peso, the Argentine peso, the Brazilian real and now, the Euro. It was launched in 2016 and currently has over 150,000 users, with most of them being in South America. In the past 24 hours, the exchange facilitated $127,000 worth of trades according to CoinMarketCap.

Obtaining the license wasn’t a walk in the park, the exchange’s COO Denise Valdivia revealed. It had to prove that it was compliant with the anti-money laundering and know-your-customer protocols. Additionally, it had to undergo a criminal background check and an internal audit.

He stated, “Obtaining both licenses was hard and complex work for CryptoMarket, but the result warrants it.”

Estonia has had some of the best policies for the crypto industry in the world. However, in May last year, the Ministry of Finance introduced a number of changes that made the licensing of crypto firms harder than before. They included stipulations requiring the business to have adequate local presence, increasing the license application time from 30 to 90 days and raising the fee by 1,000% to €3,330.

Estonia has traditionally been tech-savvy, making blockchain and crypto adoption easier than in less tech-savvy countries. The country has pioneered e-residency, becoming the first country to offer electronic residency to people from outside the country.

In contrast, Chile has yet to come up with regulations for cryptos. Early last year, the country’s Finance Minister Felipe Larrain introduced a bill that sought to offer guidance for the industry. Not much has come of it and crypto entities in the South American country still operate in a grey area.

The situation isn’t any better in Argentina and Brazil, the other two countries where CryptoMarkets has a high presence. In Brazil, the banking industry has been embroiled in a battle with the crypto industry for years now. The banks have sought to deny banking access to crypto companies citing the increased risk. Crypto companies have fought back, with a number of them winning their lawsuits.

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