The world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Binance has sent shockwaves across the crypto industry, particularly in the United Kingdom after suspending both deposits and withdrawals for the Sterling.

A company spokesperson broke the news on Tuesdays affecting transfers made in GBP, barely a month after halting dollar transfers.

Binance enables its users to engage in cryptocurrency transactions by selling, buying, and trading digital currencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. Additionally, the platform offers many other services, including staking and lending.

Binance Loses The Sterling On-Ramp and Off-Ramp Service

In an email sent to “Binancians” on Tuesday, the top crypto exchange said that its GBP fiat partner, Skrill Limited had decided to stop GDP fiat services including deposits and withdrawals, citing regulatory pressure in the United Kingdom.

“We regret to inform you that our GBP fiat partner, Skrill Limited, has informed us that it will stop offering GBP fiat services, namely deposits, and withdrawals via Faster Payments and card, to Binance users,” Binance said in an email sent to customers.

Binance now faces one of the biggest challenges and must race to find another fiat service provider before May when Skrill Limited will officially stop engagements with the exchange.

According to an email sent to Decrypt and shared with Binance customers, users on the platform will not be able to open accounts with Sterling deposits. However, existing users did not have to worry because they will still have access to their GBP balances.

“This change affects less than 1% of Binance users,” the spokesperson said in the email before adding, “however, we know that these services are valued by our users and our team is working hard to find an alternative solution for them. We will share updates on this as and when we are able.”

Binance’s relationship with GPB has never been stable – it has always been on, off, on, and off again. The exchange company, under the leadership of Changpeng Zhao (CZ), started offering GBP trading pairs in 2020 before launching the regional trading platform in the United Kingdom.

Binance users who preferred GBP trading pairs were, at the time, able to access fiat-to-crypto services via Binance Jersey – a crypto exchange platform located in the region between France and England.

Still, Binance suffered another blow when the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the UK directed the exchange company to cease “any regulated activities,” in June 2021 without prior written consent.

Binance customers in the UK could no longer access GBP or euro fiat on-ramp services to fund their accounts. Following a partnership with Skrill Limited in March 2022, Binance restarted GBP and euro which tapped the latter’s parent company—PaySafe’s technology.

“We have agreed with Binance to cease offering our embedded wallet solution to their customers in the UK. We have concluded that the UK regulatory environment in relation to crypto is too challenging to offer this service at this time and so this is a prudent decision on our part taken in an abundance of caution,” a Skrill representative said in a statement sent to Decrypt.

Last week, PaySafe reported its fourth-quarter earnings. The company owns Skrill Limited and its stocks trade under the PSFE ticker on the NYSE. PaySafe said it had processed payments valued at $130 billion in 2022, a 6% increase from 2021.

Binance has assured customers that all other fund transfer services are working as usual, including buying and selling crypto on Users can still buy crypto directly using credit or debit cards.

“In the meantime, all methods of depositing and withdrawing other fiat currencies as well as buying and selling crypto on remain unaffected, including bank transfers using one of the other fiat currencies supported by Binance, and buying and selling crypto directly via credit or debit card,” the Binance spokesperson said in the statement sent to customers.

Binance has also been dealing with other bank transfer troubles, including a temporary suspension on USD bank transfers in early February. The exchange did not offer any explanation as to why USD bank transfers had been halted but assured investors the service would be back as soon as possible.

This disruption did not impact Binance.US, an independent arm of that mainly serves residents of the United States.

Still, On January 21, Binance announced that the now-fallen Signature Bank, a primary banking partner, had decided to cease USD transfers under $100,000 to the trading platform.

At the time Binance said the directive only affected 0.01% of its customer base with the majority of the users able to transact normally. However, another major announcement was sent to Binance users on January 23.

Binance reckoned that users from 143 countries were no longer going to access the SWIFT platform for the US dollar – a move that would consequently affect deposits and withdrawals.

Some of the countries not affected by the caveat on the SWIFT platform included the United States, Australia, Germany, the United Kingdom, and France.

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