Huobi reforms Singaporean operation

Crypto exchange Huobi Global has announced it will be setting up an entity under the name of Huobi Singapore, after announcing a phased shutdown of operations in the country.

Huobi Singapore CEO and director Edward Chen said the crypto exchange’s withdrawal was planned so that the new and regulatory-compliant entity may be set up in its stead.

Chen added that Huobi was committed to complying with local and international regulations and the new entity was a step in that direction.

This comes only weeks after the company said it would discontinue operations in China where a complete ban on cryptocurrencies was imposed earlier this year.

During a meeting on Tuesday, Huobi said that it would have to restrict Singapore as an available jurisdiction in order to comply with the country’s laws. “Regrettably, this means we can no longer offer services to Singapore-based users”, a statement by the company read.

The company gave Singaporean users a grace period during which they may settle matters and transfer their crypto holdings. Huobi said it would begin a gradual phase out on March 31, 2022 and shut down services over time.

However, Huobi’s Singapore-based customers should close their active positions and begin withdrawing their digital assets with “immediate effect”, the exchange recommended.

The company did not detail much on what has motivated the change in a jurisdiction that is now seeking to embrace cryptocurrency more openly lest “it falls behind”.

However, Huobi has offered assurances that local users have nothing to worry about insofar the security and integrity of their holdings went.

The country’s Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) has been open-minded to the idea of cryptocurrencies. However, the regulator, which is also the country’s central bank, has cautioned investors to tread carefully in crypto.

Cryptocurrencies are still associated with a higher-than-usual risk of investment, regulators have cautioned. The decision to reconsider its position in Singapore follows Huobi’s announcement that it would be moving its spot trading service from the Seychelles to Gibraltar, an arguably more transparent region.

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Updated: 11/11/2021 — 21:00