At the end of March, the world’s largest cryptocurrency by volume, Binance, announced that it would be moving operations to the European island nation of Malta. Binance, was welcomed with open arms by the country’s Prime Minister, Joseph Muscat. Muscat, and the rest of the Malta government, are seeking to position the country of Malta as a blockchain utopia and lure the booming cryptocurrency industry to its shores.
Malta’s plan is working, as yet another major cryptocurrency exchange will be setting up shop in “Blockchain Island.” OKEx, which is the world’s second largest crypto exchange by volume, announced the plan via a press release, suggesting that the new office in Malta will be a “foundation for further OKEx growth.”
Tim Byun, Chief Risk Officer and Head of Government Relations for OKEx had this to say about the move:
“Malta’s Virtual Financial Asset Act is a solid foundation for the industry and the government to work together in fostering the nascent blockchain/digital asset industry. More specifically, Malta’s sound risk-based approach will help cultivate a responsible, compliant, and healthy ecosystem.”
OKEx CEO Chris Lee adds:
“We look forward to working with the Malta government as it is forward thinking and shares many of our same values: the most important of which are protection of traders and the general public, compliance with Anti Money Laundering and Know Your Customer standards, and recognition of the innovation and importance of continued development in the Blockchain ecosystem.”
Malta has been keen to support the booming blockchain movement and accompanying cryptocurrency assets. In February, the country released a document called “Malta - A Leader in DLT Regulation”, further making its stand in support of the crypto market and underlying technology. The Maltese government also announced plans to form the Malta Digital Innovation Authority, as well as establishing other regulatory entities, to provide further legal clarity and support around blockchain and crypto.
Malta is doing a fantastic job at attracting interest from major market players, and will likely lead the rest of the world in supporting cryptocurrency and blockchain for the near future.
[Image Credit: OKEx Facebook Page]