Two Chinese cryptocurrency exchanges are taking steps that would bring the Chinese bitcoin withdrawal ban to an end, and allow their customers to withdraw funds for the first time in months.
OKCoin and Huobi have separately confirmed they are relaxing the restrictions, which were put in place several months ago after concern from regulators including the Chinese central bank, the People’s Bank of China.
OKCoin confirmed that they are allowing withdrawals from today, in a move that has already been welcomed by investors and analysts alike. One of the largest volume exchanges in the world, it is hoped the move will inspire other exchanges to get ready to relax their restrictions.
While withdrawals are now being processed, they are still subject to some requirements, with verification processes and a yearly ceiling on withdrawals of $1 million now in force.
A close competitor, Huobi has confirmed that it will be taking similar steps from tomorrow, as the industry in China starts to thaw with a warming outlook from regulators.
The People’s Bank of China in particular is understood to be hotting up to the industry, having stepped in some months ago to instate the present regulatory restrictions.
With prices quickly spiralling around the start of 2017, the exchanges were left with no choice but to comply, resulting in an overnight freezing of assets within bitcoin and altcoin exchanges.
However, with exchanges having now redeveloped and improved their systems in line with the expectations of regulators, it is thought that others will now follow suit in reopening withdrawals for their existing investment customers.
The news has weighed positively on bitcoin trading on the day, up 6.15% to $2473. 58 at the time of writing.
OKCoin, which was founded in 2013, remains one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges in the world, reporting transactional volumes of over 16 million bitcoin per month in August of last year.
Huobi is another giant of the industry, and the steps from both of these exchanges will set the tone for other Chinese exchanges in reassessing their approach to withdrawals.
While the long-term picture for regulation in China remains unclear, today’s steps are a welcome change from the tight restrictions introduced earlier this year, which have left countless investors unable to withdraw or access capital tied up in cryptocurrency investments.