Binance, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, has withdrawn its application for a license from the Abu Dhabi Financial Services Regulatory Authority (ADFSRA). This comes after Binance reached out to the ADFSRA in January of this year in order to be granted a license to operate within the Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), the financial free zone of the emirate.
The exchange’s CEO and co-founder, Changpeng Zhao, announced the news on Twitter on Tuesday. The tweet said that Binance had reached out to the regulator to conduct an assessment of their compliance needs and that, despite having had “fruitful discussions”, the exchange had chosen to withdraw its application.
Binance says it will look to refile the application at a later stage once the compliance and regulatory requirements have been properly assessed and addressed. The exchange also noted that this decision would not stop them from engaging with other relevant government authorities and industry partners.
The move is interesting as, in February, Binance had put out a job offer for a Compliance Officer for ADGM. The exchange described the role as a “restructuring of our global compliance division”, suggesting that the exchange was more than likely still planning to go through with its pursuit of an ADGM license.
The decision to withdraw the application comes at a time when UAE regulators have been increasingly looking to tighten their compliance rules around cryptocurrency exchanges. As a result, it appears that Binance is attempting to reassess its compliance needs prior to filing a new application.