Beijing Doubles Down on Rooting out Crypto in China

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Chinas central bank said on Monday it had urged some banks and payment firms to crack down harder on cryptocurrency trading, in the latest move by Chinese authorities to stem the use of digital coins.

The Peoples Bank of Chinas statement sent bitcoin tumbling to a twoweek low and ether to a more than fiveweek low. On Tuesday, prices of major cryptocurrencies stabilised.

WHAT DID THE PBOC SAY?

The PBOC statement followed a meeting with banks and payment firms in which it urged them to thoroughly check client accounts, identify those involved in cryptocurrency transactions and promptly cut their payment channels.

China Construction Bank, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China ICBC, Agricultural Bank of China AgBank and Postal Savings Bank of China attended the meeting, along with Alipay, the ubiquitous payment platform owned by fintech giant Ant Group.

Attendees vowed to comply. AgBank said that it would conduct due diligence to root out illegal cryptorelated activities and shut down suspicious accounts, and Alipay said it would set up a monitoring system targeting key websites and accounts, and blacklist merchants involved in virtual currency transactions.

WHAT IS THE IMPACT OF THE CRACKDOWN?

The latest tightening makes it far more difficult for individuals in China to trade cryptocurrencies, even through channels that have avoided previous restrictions.

The law hasnt changed, its just the enforcement, said Bobby Lee, founder and CEO of Ballet, a cryptocurrency…

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