Gemini Halts Services in Netherlands Amidst Stringent Crypto Regulations

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Key Takeaways

  • Gemini services would cease operation as of November 17, 2023
  • The exchange plans  to adhere to the Markets in Crypto-Assets Regulation (MiCA)

Leading cryptocurrency exchange, Gemini has announced the discontinuation of its services in the Netherlands, citing regulatory constraints imposed by the Dutch central bank, De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB). In an email sent to its users, Gemini conveyed that its services would cease operation as of November 17, 2023, joining a growing list of crypto platforms halting operations within the country.

This development echoes the earlier exit of Binance from the Dutch market in July 2023, which was prompted by the exchange’s inability to obtain a virtual asset service provider (VASP) license from the DNB, a certification demonstrating compliance with anti-money laundering (AML) protocols.

However, Gemini does not intend to sever all ties with the Dutch market. The email emphasized the exchange’s commitment to adhere to the Markets in Crypto-Assets Regulation (MiCA), a comprehensive set of crypto regulations within the European Union (EU). Once MiCA compliance is achieved, Gemini plans to resume operations in the Netherlands.

The email message conveyed the company’s dedication to collaboration with global regulators, stating, “Gemini continues to be committed to working collaboratively with regulators around the world.”

For Dutch users of Gemini, the immediate concern revolves around the secure transition of their fiat and cryptocurrency holdings. The exchange has recommended that users transfer their assets to Bitvavo, a local exchange duly registered with the DNB. Gemini has also pledged to waive any trading fees associated with asset withdrawals or transfers to ensure a seamless transition for its users.

The exit of both Gemini and Binance from the Netherlands underscores the growing trend of stringent crypto regulations not only within the country but also across the broader EU. The DNB’s restrictions are aligned with the Netherlands’ efforts to harmonize with MiCA, aimed at standardizing crypto regulations among EU member states.

This regulatory rigor, leading to the departure of two major exchanges in quick succession, reflects the challenges faced by platforms and their user base. The impact is felt both in terms of accessibility to these platforms and the broader cryptocurrency ecosystem in the Netherlands.

The decisions by Gemini and Binance may serve as a signal of what lies ahead for crypto regulation across the EU. As MiCA regulations take effect, other exchanges may also confront obstacles in achieving compliance. This could potentially prompt a reevaluation of strategies among crypto platforms operating within the EU.

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Saniya Raahath
Saniya Raahath

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