Binance restricts services in Russia following recent EU sanctions

Binance restricts services in Russia following recent EU sanctions
Binance Holdings Ltd., the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world by trading volume, has reportedly limited its services to Russia following the latest sanctions imposed by the European Union.

The crypto exchange revealed that it will cease services for Russia-based entities or individuals owning crypto assets over the value of USD 10,885.

For the uninitiated, Russia is one of the world’s top five markets of Binance with around 10 million accounts. Less than 50,000 accounts are estimated to hold a value of more than USD 10,885.

Earlier this month, the European Union sanctioned a ban on high-value crypto transactions with Moscow as part of all-around sanctions triggered by the invasion of Ukraine.

Changpeng Zhao, Chief Executive Officer of Binance, commented that although the measures are possibly restrained to general Russian citizens, the company must initiate the execution of these sanctions.

Accounts affected by the restrictions will be put on withdraw-only mode and no trading and deposits will be allowed. Russia-based legal entities and Russian nationals with crypto account balances above USD 10,885 will have ninety days to close their positions.

The company stated that the changes would not affect non-sanctioned Russians who can verify through proof of address that they reside outside the country.

Last month, Zhao stated that the company has followed international government mandates to limit sanctioned individuals, but it would be unethical to expand them beyond a point.

Binance, along with other U.S. exchanges like Kraken and Coinbase Global Inc, has rejected Kyiv’s proposal for a complete ban on Russian users after the country invaded Ukraine. The company stated that it would not freeze millions of accounts of innocent users.

Although crypto is one factor, the country might still suffer economic damages from other sanctions. Recently, the IMF (International Monetary Fund) released the projected gross domestic product (GDP) of countries for 2022-23.

While the GDP of nations like Saudi Arabia and India is projected to grow by 7.6% and 8.2% respectively, the IMF anticipated a reduction of 8.5% for Russia this fiscal year.

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