Malaysia approves crypto exchange registrations

By Our Reporter

…orders 19 platforms to cease operations

The Securities Commission Malaysia (SC) announced that it has registered three Recognized Market Operators (RMOs) to establish and operate digital asset exchanges (DAX) in the country.

The SC had begun registering cryptocurrency exchanges after it started regulating the crypto space earlier this year. The first three crypto trading platform operators have been conditionally approved and given nine months to comply with registration requirements. Meanwhile, 19 crypto exchanges have been told to cease operations.

Malaysia started regulating its crypto industry in January, requiring anyone interested in operating a crypto exchange to register as an RMO with the commission.

According to the announcement, the three registered DAX operators are Luno Malaysia Sdn Bhd, Sinegy Technologies (M) Sdn Bhd, Tokenize Technology (M) Sdn Bhd. The three will become the country’s first regulated crypto exchanges once they comply with the regulatory requirements. The SC has given them up to nine months to comply with regulatory requirements. Headquartered in London with regional hubs in Singapore and Cape Town, Luno entered Malaysia in 2015. The exchange claims to have close to 3 million opened wallets across over 40 countries.

The announcement also advised members of the public “to be mindful of the risks related to trading in digital assets, including risks of trading on exchanges that are not registered with the SC”.

Datuk Syed Zaid Albar, the chairman of SC Malaysia, explained that “The new framework is part of the SC’s efforts to promote innovation while ensuring investor protection in the trading of digital assets.”

The SC also ordered 19 crypto trading platforms to cease operations in the country and return funds and assets to investors, effective June 1. Operating a DAX without authorisation from the SC is an offence under securities laws, said the announcement. A person in breach may be liable to a fine or imprisonment term or both. The commission maintains a regularly updated list of all approved exchange operators and those that are required to cease operations.

The 19 exchanges are: Aes Signatum Berhad, Arbor Digital, B4u Exc, Belfrics Malaysia, Bitpoint Malaysia, Blokmy, Chako Global, Ezytronics (World Cloud Ventures), Finx Blockchain (Finx Capital), Getcoinapp, Gigaex, Mcp International, Mx Global, Pinkexc, Mbaex Online Pte Ltd. (Tezatech), Udax International, Upbit Malaysia, Vardiz Commerce, and Xbit Asia.

In January, 45 crypto exchanges were operating in the country, and anyone wanting to operate a crypto asset platform had to submit an application to the commission by 1 March.


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