Nigeria Halts Binance Operations: Regulator Reports Illegal Activity
• The Nigerian Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has issued a statement declaring Binance’s operations in Nigeria as illegal.
• This follows a lawsuit filed by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) against Binance for unregistered security offers, failure to register as an exchange or broker, and commingling of funds.
• Binance is one of the biggest crypto exchanges in Nigeria and the Middle East and North Africa region is leading crypto adoption globally.
Nigeria Halts Binance Operations
The Nigerian securities regulator has declared that cryptocurrency exchange Binance’s operations in the country are illegal due to it being neither registered nor regulated there. This comes after the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed a lawsuit with 13 charges against Binance earlier this week.
Binance Popularity in Nigeria
Binance is one of the most popular cryptocurrency exchanges in Nigeria, one of Africa’s most populous countries. According to Chainalysis, users from the Middle East and North Africa received $566 billion worth of cryptocurrencies between July 2021 – June 2022 – a 48% increase compared to last year.
New Finance Act
On May 28th, former President Muhammadu Buhari signed into law what is known as the Finance Act which introduced a 10% tax on profits generated from digital assets. The newly elected president, Bola Tinubu also released his manifesto which proposed revisions to regulations on digital assets set forth by SEC making them more business-friendly.
Central Bank Regulations
The Central Bank of Nigeria does not recognize cryptocurrencies as legal tender and commercial banks have been prohibited from engaging in any type of crypto transactions related activities.
Despite its popularity, Nigeria’s recent actions have made it clear that it takes regulatory compliance seriously when it comes to businesses operating within its jurisdiction. As such, individuals dealing with cryptocurrency exchanges like Binance should be aware that they are doing so at their own risk until further notice given by the Nigerian SEC or Central Bank