Crypto exchange OKX has announced that it will no longer serve users or accept new account requests from Canada.
OKX to cease operations in Canada
In an email on Mar. 24, OKX asked all its Canadian users to close any open positions in options, perpetual, all margined positions, and future by Jun. 22, 2023, 12:00 AM EST.
OKX also asked users to withdraw fiat currency or tokens in their accounts before the said date.
However, the exchange assured its Canadian users that their funds would remain safe until they withdrew them. Customers can withdraw tokens to their self-custody wallets or crypto accounts on other crypto asset trading platforms and dollars to their linked bank accounts.
The company said its withdrawal from the Canadian market is a temporary step for regulators to address the ‘new regulations’ issue. The OKX official signed, “We hope to see you again. Stay tuned.”
The company emailed its customers about the oncoming cessation of services on Mar. 20, 2023.
Previously, Bittrex Global, a cryptocurrency exchange, ceased serving Canadians on Jul. 29, 2022, after giving advance notice on the same regulatory developments grounds.
CSA notice on crypto
Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) published a notice on Feb. 22 asking all crypto exchange platforms to agree to legally binding undertakings as they await to be registered with the agency.
The new undertakings involve many regulations, including “buying or depositing Value Referenced Crypto Assets (commonly referred to as stablecoins) through crypto contracts without the prior written consent of the CSA.”
However, the changes might not affect stablecoin USD Coin (USDC). The agency stated that investor protection provisions and level-playing-field concerns are the main drivers of these reforms. Regulators require all cryptocurrency exchanges to register with them before getting into the Canadian market.
These regulations have brought fines to various cryptocurrency exchanges – like Bybit and KuCoin, who incurred millions of dollars in fines after the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) found them guilty of onboarding Canadians without registering as compliant platforms in the country.
Crypto asset trading platforms are also expected to provide the CSA with an updated pre-registration undertaking based on the CSA pre-registration undertaking template and implement the systems in the agreement.