Crypto exchange Bybit is exiting the UK market ahead of new cryptocurrency marketing rules set to be enforced by the country’s financial regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), next month.
The FCA is introducing new rules to make the marketing of crypto products more transparent and accurate, including a cooling-off period for first-time investors.
Bybit confirmed its decision to exit the UK market, stating that it chose to embrace the regulation proactively and pause its services in the country.
Here are the key dates and actions for UK users:
- Bybit will no longer accept new UK user account applications from October 1.
- Starting from October 8, existing UK users will not be able to make new deposits, create new contracts, or increase existing positions for all products and services. However, they can reduce or close their positions and withdraw their funds.
- Bybit has set a final deadline of January 8, 2024, for UK customers to manage and wind down their remaining positions. Any open positions after this date will be automatically liquidated, and the resulting funds can be withdrawn.
The length of the suspension and whether Bybit will return to the UK market is uncertain. However, Bybit noted that this suspension allows the company to focus its efforts and resources on meeting future UK regulatory requirements.
This move by Bybit follows a trend of crypto exchanges reevaluating their strategies in response to the FCA’s strict guidelines. Other major platforms like OKX and Binance are also considering their options.
Bybit CEO Ben Zhou explained that the new rules will change how solicitation works, and even having a website accessible to UK customers could be seen as a promotion under the new regulations.
Overall, these regulatory changes are leading many crypto exchanges to reassess their presence in the UK market, with some considering exiting altogether.
Bitcoin-focused crypto exchange CoinCorner is also ending its affiliate program for UK customers on October 1 in response to the new rules.