Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, has excluded Banco de Venezuela from its peer-to-peer (P2P) trading service. This decision closely follows a similar action taken against sanctioned Russian banks just last week.

Venezuelan Financial Giant Affected

Banco de Venezuela, a prominent financial institution in the country, finds itself removed from the P2P payment options this week. This further echoes the removal of Russian banks by Binance. The catalyst behind this measure appears to be the recent report by the Wall Street Journal on August 24th. The report highlighted the exchange’s alleged involvement in evading international financial sanctions.

Background and Significance

Having held a significant position in the local market during the late 2000s, Banco de Venezuela ranked third with over 11% market share. It was sold to the state by Grupo Santander, a private holding company, for approximately $1 billion in 2009.

The United States Treasury Department imposed sanctions on Venezuelan government officials and affiliated institutions in 2018 and 2019. This was subsequently in response to the repression of the 2014 and 2017 protests,.

Despite the exclusion of Banco de Venezuela, other private Venezuelan banks like Banesco, Banplus, and BBVA Provincial continue to be listed on Binance’s P2P platform. They all will keep maintaining their presence as viable payment options.

Unveiling Sanctioned Banks’ Presence

The revelation of sanctioned banks’ inclusion in crypto P2P payment methods came to light when the Wall Street Journal disclosed that Tinkoff Bank and Sberbank were offered as transfer options on Binance. However, following this revelation, both Tinkoff and Sberbank were swiftly removed from the Binance P2P platform.

Although their respective brand colors, denoted as “yellow” and “green,” remained, these options were confirmed to have been fully eliminated from the list by Binance spokespersons on August 25th.

Ripple Effect on Other Exchanges

In the wake of Binance’s actions, other major cryptocurrency exchanges, OKX and ByBit, also took the stance of excluding sanctioned Russian banks from their available payment choices. This series of moves underscores the growing attention to compliance with international financial regulations within the crypto industry.

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