Business 15 September 2017Jasmine Solana
ViaBTC folds exchange operations amid China’s regulatory crackdown
Chinese Bitcoin exchange ViaBTC has become the second platform to cease trading operations as the government’s clampdown on the domestic cryptocurrency space continues.
The Shenzen-based cryptocurrency exchange announced on Friday that it will “officially close the website… for exchange business in mainland China on September 30th.”
“On September 4th, China’s central bank together with six other departments released a public statement on regulation policies and warning the risks of ICO projects. As a responsible cryptocurrency exchange platform, ViaBTC has made a serious decision to carry out the spirits of the policy,” the company said on its website.
As part of its preparations, ViaBTC said it will halt registration, asset deposits and all trading pairs on September 25, before the website closes on September 30. The mining pool and cloud mining services will continue to operate, according to ViaBTC.
The company urges its users to withdraw all their assets, including CNY and cryptocurrency, before the website officially closes in mainland China.
ViaBTC’s notice follows the announcement made by BTC China on Thursday, when it declared that it will cease its China-facing trading operations by the end of September. The Shenzen-based company is considered to be one of China’s three biggest exchanges, and its announcement sparked another slide in the price of the cryptocurrency. Bitcoin’s price dropped to $3,000 level on Friday, while Bitcoin Cash traded at $326, according to CoinMarketCap.com data.
BTC China’s announcement comes on the heels of reports that Shanghai authorities have issued a verbal order to Bitcoin exchanges based in the city to stop their operations. Other members of China’s so-called Big 3 exchanges are still operating as normal, although there have been reports that OKCoin and Huobi are scheduled to meet with regulators on Friday—and the results of the meeting may prompt the exchanges to “change their tune.”
Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (SegWit) chain are referenced as BTC coins; tokens on the Bitcoin Cash ABC chain are referenced as BCH, BCH-ABC or BAB coins.
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