Huobi operates unregulated business in Malaysia, says financial watchdog

abdelaziz Fathi

Malaysia’s financial regulator has backlisted yet another group of cryptocurrency websites, citing their brands are not authorised to operate in the country.

Huobi

Most notably, the Securities Commission (SC) said that the leading crypto exchange Huobi and its associated brands are carrying out unlicensed capital market activities. Huobi, a former ‘big three’ platform in China, is the sixth-largest crypto exchange in the world by trading volume, competing with the likes of Coinbase, Binance and Kraken.

Notably, the updated list includes names of fraudulent clone platforms that have been posing as well-known, regulated platforms around the world, including a bogus website called Binance Futures Investment.


The watchdog has also sounded an alarm over yet another fraudulent firm, but this time is shedding light on a mix of a cryptocurrency and investment scam. The SC, as part of its intensified market supervision, said that a company called Sultan Pelaburan Malaysia is an unlicensed trading provider, cautioning all retail investors about the risks of dealing with it.

The watchdog advises its citizens not to make use of such services nor to make any investment with companies or individuals that are not approved or licensed by the SC.

Anyone who engages in regulated activities without a valid license or registration from the SC is committing an offence under the Capital Markets and Services Act 2007. If convicted, they may be punished with imprisonment of up to ten years and fined.

Earlier this month, Huobi had been given a licence by the Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC) to operate as a digital currency service provider.

The move will allow Huobi to participate in Australia’s fast-growing digital assets ecosystem by operating crypto native services under full regulatory supervision and offer financial solutions to clients in new geographies. It also marks an expansion of the exchange’s core business focus after it had recently obtained licenses in New Zealand and the United Arab Emirates.

Like other developed nations, Australia places stringent requirements on cryptocurrency operators.

Huobi’s enthusiastic push into foreign markets comes as multiple major exchanges pursue a global investor base. Its rival Binance announced last month that it will resume offering its futures, options, and leveraged tokens products to Australian crypto traders.

Huobi has been making inroads into new regions as it anticipates a 30% revenue plunge after it has completely shut down its trading for mainland investors. The Seychelles-based crypto exchange also suspended Bitcoin mining services and sales of mining equipment in China. Additionally, Huobi moved its spot-trading business to Gibraltar.

 

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