Binance to halt crypto debit card services in LatAm, Mid-East
- The suspension of crypto debit card services comes without disclosure of specific reasons.
- It raised questions about the factors influencing this abrupt decision.
Starting 25 August, Binance [BNB] will suspend its crypto debit card services in Latin America and the Middle East, impacting users in these regions. The exchange announced this decision without providing a specific explanation.
The crypto debit card provided by Binance functioned similarly to traditional debit cards, enabling users to make everyday purchases using cryptocurrency assets as funding. However, the exchange has decided to terminate these services in Latin America and the Middle East by 21 September.
Despite the suspension, Binance has provided assurance to users that they can still process refunds and disputes related to the service until 20 December.
The situation came to public attention when a user on the social media platform X raised concerns about issues with crypto debit cards in Colombia. In response to this, Binance released an announcement revealing the imminent suspension of debit card services.
The Binance Card will no longer be available to users in Latin America and the Middle East. The product, like most debit cards, has been utilized by Binance’s users to pay for basic daily expenses but in this case, the cards are funded with crypto assets. Only a tiny…
— Binance Customer Support (@BinanceHelpDesk) August 23, 2023
Exchange’s decision sparks speculation
Binance initially introduced its crypto-backed debit card concept in April 2020. By July of the same year, Binance distributed them to various countries across Europe and other parts of the world. In subsequent developments, Binance partnered with payment processor Swipe, with the intention of extending to the United States.
Despite the announcement of the suspension, Binance has not provided detailed reasons for this decision. Nonetheless, the exchange did communicate that the impact would be limited to a small fraction of its user base. Specifically, “less than 1% of users in the markets mentioned” would be reportedly affected.
There were some noteworthy reactions to this news. Notably, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao removed certain posts on social media platform X regarding the decision and responses to it.
As reasons behind this decision remain undisclosed, speculation will continue about potential factors influencing this choice.