Netherlands 'progress' despite failing to secure key permits

Binance CEO says Netherlands remains “progressive” despite failure to secure critical license

The embattled CEO is projecting a cool image on social media withdrawing his companies from another market.


Binance CEO Changpeng ‘CZ’ Zhao said Netherlands’ posture towards crypto remains “pretty progressive” despite his exchange’s failed registration as a virtual asset service provider (VASP), according to a June 19 tweet.

CZ’s statement was in response to a user who criticized Netherlands’ Central Bank, De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB), for refusing to grant foreign entities licenses to operate in the country.

The original poster suggested that the regulator was “cherry picking” as it is “hard to believe that only Dutch companies are able to deliver what the DNB is asking for.”

In response, Zhao said:

“Don’t read too much into it. No beef. Binance is a large and complex platform. There are 50 simpler local VASP license holders. They should provide decent access for crypto, we hope. Netherland is still pretty progressive all things considered.”

Binance failed VASP registration

On June 16, Binance pulled out of the Dutch market after its inability to register as a VASP with the authorities.

Binance stated that the company’s application was unsuccessful in the Netherlands despite its compliance with EU standards in other countries, like France, Italy, Spain, Poland, Sweden, and Lithuania.

The exchange added that it “will continue striving to obtain authorizations to provide our products and services to users in the Netherlands.”

In 2022, DNB fined Binance €3.3 million for offering unlicensed crypto services to the country’s residents.

Netherlands crypto posture

Like most European countries, the Netherlands has adopted strict measures toward regulating the crypto industry.

The Dutch Authority for Financial Markets (AFM) chairman, Laura van Geest, previously stated that the country would ensure strict implementation of the EU’s Markets in Crypto Assets regulation (MiCA).

Geest added that they do not think crypto is “good news” because it is “difficult to fathom, vulnerable to deception, fraud, and manipulation.”

Meanwhile, crypto firms operating within the country must register with the DNB and strictly adhere to anti-money laundering and know-your-customer processes.

According to DNB’s public register, there are over 30 registered crypto service providers in operating in the Netherlands, including Coinbase, OKCoin Europe, eToro (Europe) Limited, and several other local firms.

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