Local think tank Infrawatch PH has sent a letter to the Philippines’ Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), urging the government agency to launch an investigation against crypto exchange Binance for promotions without permits.
The letter alleged that the crypto exchange has been targeting Filipino consumers with unregistered promotions that are being posted casually on social media platforms. Terry Ridon, the convenor for Infrawatch PH, said that Binance disregards Philippine regulations, as the exchange performs virtual asset service provider (VASP) functions in the country without the license.
In response to the letter, a Binance spokesperson told Cointelegraph that the exchange takes compliance seriously and is working with regulators, law enforcement and industry leaders to further security and sustainability within the industry. Binance explained that:
“In the Philippines, Binance is looking to secure the VASP and EMI licenses. We are continuously engaging in discussions with regulators and stakeholders within the country. Our goal is to contribute to the Philippines’ increasingly vibrant Web3 and blockchain ecosystem.”
The Binance spokesperson also highlighted that the exchange is enforcing compliance with the applicable laws and regulations. Furthermore, the exchange has introduced mandatory Know Your Customer (KYC) requirements for its users. Additionally, the spokesperson noted that they have been continuously investing in compliance efforts.
In June, Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao attended a press briefing in Manila where he expressed the exchange’s intent to secure critical licenses in the Philippines. This includes the VASP license that allows the firm to legally facilitate crypto exchanges and the e-money issuer (EMI) license that lets Binance issue digital money.
This is not the first time that Infrawatch PH has opposed the exchange’s operations within the country. In June, the think tank reached out to the Philippine central bank and urged the agency to conduct proceedings against Binance, describing it as a “danger to the public” while citing the crypto crash.