ForexMinute.com – In a huge step against Bitcoin and other altcoins, the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) commanded all the banks and third-party payment providers to freeze their ties with the virtual currency exchanges, reported Caixin newspaper. The new rule will bar cryptocurrency trading websites and companies from opening or using any bank accounts in China.
The central bank has also asked all the Bitcoin exchanges to withdraw their money by April 15 this year. It further threatened to impose heavy penalties if any exchange withdraw cash post the aforementioned date. PBOC also issued a list of 15 trading websites that will be put under the radar particularly if it fails to withdraw their every penny post mid-April. These trading websites include the most renowned and reputable names like OKCoin, Huobi and BTC China.
The news came at the time when Chinese Bitcoin exchanges were already progressing towards profitable ventures; especially OKCoin, which recently raised a whopping $10m funding last week. Furthermore, BTC China and Huobi recently added Litecoin trading to their services that had attracted global customers towards their website.
China’s Take on Virtual Currencies
Chinese regulators have always been one of the major opponents of digital currencies. Last year, they and four other central governments issued a joint-statement to consider Bitcoins as commodity. The statement further barred financial institutions and payment companies from providing services to companies that do businesses related to digital currencies.
As soon as the ruling comes into effect, every cryptocurrency exchange will have to consider moving their accounts offshore, or maybe the entire enterprise to avoid further constraints. It will be an important move for the entire cryptocurrency community as Chinese exchanges currently hold over 60% of the total Bitcoin businesses.
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