Big­gest ryp­tocur­rency ex­change in Poland to move to Malta

The Malta Business Weekly - - FRONT PAGE -

Pol­ish cryp­tocur­rency ex­change BitBay is mov­ing to Malta be­cause it can’t open a bank ac­count in its home­land.

BitBay, es­tab­lished 2014, of­fers 29 crypt­pcur­ren­cies for trad­ing and han­dles $9.4 mil­lion in cus­tomer money (ac­cord­ing to coin­mar­ket­cap.com), mak­ing it the largest such busi­ness in the coun­try.

The last bank will­ing to work with cryp­tocur­rency busi­nesses de­cided to end its work­ing re­la­tion­ship with the ex­change, ac­cord­ing to a state­ment pub­lished on the BitPay web­site, and so it can no longer con­tinue to con­duct busi­ness in the coun­try.

The state­ment says that cus­tomers will no longer be able to process Pol­ish zlo­tys af­ter the 31st of May, and from the 17th of Septem­ber the com­pany will not be op­er­a­tional in Poland at all.

The Pol­ish es­tab­lish­ment has been send­ing mixed mes­sages re­gard­ing its ac­cep­tance of cryp­tocur­rency. The coun­try’s big­gest credit rat­ing agency, which is owned by sev­eral ma­jor Pol­ish banks, uses blockchain tech­nol­ogy, and the govern­ment funds a blockchain de­vel­op­ment cen­tre. Re­port­edly, some­one there is work­ing on a crypto-zloty.

In Fe­bru­ary, a Pol­ish news source dis­cov­ered that the Pol­ish cen­tral bank paid a pop­u­lar YouTube per­son­al­ity to record an anti-cryp­tocur­rency mes­sage – specif­i­cally, $30,000 to Marcin Du­biel to post a video called “I LOST ALL THE MONEY?!”, ac­cord­ing to money.pl. The video fea­tures a scene where the pro­tag­o­nist is em­bar­rassed at a restau­rant when he can­not pay for his date’s meal with cryp­tocur­rency. She storms out, telling him that it’s not real money.

Malta on the other hand wants to at­tract cryp­tocur­rency busi­nesses to its shores, and has al­ready been suc­cess­ful in nab­bing some of the­biggest. The govern­ment had been promis­ing to set up reg­u­la­tions for the in­dus­try, and last week made good with the pub­lish­ing of three new laws.

The state­ment says that Malta was de­cided upon af­ter many months of anal­y­sis, and fruit­ful dis­cus­sions with the govern­ment of Malta.

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