Dutch regulator fines crypto exchange Binance €3.3 million
De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB) fined the world’s largest crypto exchange Binance, where you can trade in digital currencies like Bitcoin, over 3.3 million euros. According to the regulator, Binance offered crypto services in the Netherlands without a legally required registration with the DNB. The central bank called it a “very serious” violation.
When determining the amount of the fine, DNB took into account Binance’s position as the largest crypto party in the world, good for a daily trading volume of $13.7 billion. Binance has a vast number of customers in the Netherlands, according to the regulator. Binance also enjoyed a competitive advantage because the company did not pay levies to DNB or incur other supervision-related costs due to the lack of registration.
In August last year, the central bank already issued a warning about Binance’s illegal practices. But the company failed to respond immediately. According to DNB, the crypto exchange did not comply with the rules for a long time - from May 2020, when the DNB implemented the registration obligation, until at least early December when the regulator completed its investigation.
DNB lowered the fine by 5 percent partly because Binance has now submitted a registration application. The regulator also said that Binance was relatively transparent about its business operations throughout the process. Binance still does not have the required registration because DNB is still assessing the application.
Binance has long had a reputation for doing everything it could to avoid supervision. The company is officially located in the Cayman Islands. It has an office in Singapore but no official headquarters. Founder Changpeng Zhao previously said this was because the company operates in a decentralized manner, just like the cryptocurrencies it trades. Several regulators around the world have already told Binance that its methods are unacceptable.
Reporting by ANP