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Binance Nigeria Confirms Ban, Reassures Users on Fund Safety

In a recent turn of events, Binance, a leading global cryptocurrency exchange platform, finds itself at the center of a regulatory storm in Nigeria. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and other financial institutions have imposed a ban on Binance Nigeria, citing concerns about its role in facilitating illicit activities within the cryptocurrency space.

The crackdown comes amidst growing regulatory scrutiny aimed at addressing the exploitation of cryptocurrency platforms for criminal purposes, which has been linked to the devaluation of the local currency, the naira.

Insights from Regulatory Sources

Sources within the presidency and regulatory bodies have shed light on the motivations behind the ban. According to these sources, the government is deeply concerned about the rampant exploitation of cryptocurrency exchanges for criminal activities, which is believed to have adverse effects on the stability of the naira.

Restrictions Implemented

Reacting to the ban, Binance has implemented several restrictions for its Nigerian users. Effective immediately, the platform has disabled the sell option for fiat currency and USDT (Tether), while also imposing a cap on the buy option for Nigerian users.

Additionally, Binance has disabled the purchase of cryptocurrencies via peer-to-peer (P2P) transactions for its Nigerian users, further limiting their ability to engage in crypto trading activities.

Binance’s Response and Reassurance

Amidst the regulatory challenges, Binance has issued a statement addressing the situation to its subscribers via email and it reads thus;

“We are aware that some users are experiencing issues accessing, along with other platforms in the industry. Only users attempting to access the website are impacted, although the App is currently available. Importantly, all user funds are secure and accounts can still be accessed. We remain committed to the adherence to local regulations and laws. We continue to actively engage with regulators, policymakers and other relevant stakeholders to foster an open transparent dialogue about managing the evolving landscape of cryptocurrency. Any changes or updates will be communicated promptly via our official channels,”

Evolving Regulatory Landscape

The ban on Binance Nigeria is part of a broader regulatory landscape that continues to evolve. In December 2023, the CBN reversed its previous ban on crypto assets, signaling a shifting regulatory stance.

However, the recent directive from the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) instructing telecom companies to restrict access to Binance and other cryptocurrency companies’ websites adds another layer of complexity to the regulatory environment.

Other exchanges affected are Coinbase, OctaFX etc.

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