BitMEX, a peer-to-peer crypto exchange, will cease to provide its trading services to customers based in Ontario, Canada from September 1. This is mandated by the state’s securities regulator, the Ontario Securities Commission.
Announcing in its blog, BitMex stated that all existing clients residing in Ontario will not be able to place orders that would open a new position or increase an existing open position from the first day of September.
Positions that are open will continue to actively run till January 4, 2021, and after the said date, any open positions on the exchange will be forced to shut down. All residents from the Canadian province seeking to register on BitMEX for the first time after discontinuation of service will not be permitted to trade on the platform to avoid any regulatory breach.
Prior to this, the exchange recently added three countries — Hong Kong, Bermuda, and Seychelles — to its trade restrictions list. Apart from these, US residents have also been barred from its services since 2015. The province of Québec in Canada, North Korea, Sudan, Crimea and Sevastopol, Cuba, Syria, and Iran are also off-limits for BitMEX.
The cryptocurrency exchange has not disclosed a reason as to why it was blocking the residents in Ontario. However, as per its post, the regulatory restrictions are mandated by the Ontario Securities Commission. BitMEX further went on to state that it supports the efforts of regulators to help establish standards for cryptocurrency products.
BitMEX has been striving to become compliant with regulatory bodies across various jurisdictions. Starting from August 28, the exchange will require a mandatory verification identification for all users.
The User Verification Programme will assist to boost BitMEX’s reputation and enhance security on the platform.This includes uploading a photo ID and proof of address, taking a selfie, as well as answering a few multiple-choice questions about the source of funds and trading experience. The process is set to run for six months and will end in February 2021.
BitMEX is currently the second-largest cryptocurrency derivatives exchange by open interest, with just less than $1 billion in open bitcoin futures contracts.