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Crypto exchange OKX becomes regulated in Australia

By:
on May 14, 2024
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  • OKX has moved its Australian-focused services under locally regulated entities.
  • The exchange has stopped offering copy trading, yield-bearing products, and certain tokens in Australia.
  • The current expansion follows OKX's exit from India in March.

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Cryptocurrency exchange OKX is moving its Australian-focused services under a locally regulated entity as part of its expansion in the Asia-Pacific region.

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Jamie Kennedy, OKX Australia’s general manager, emphasized the importance of meeting user needs, including “seamless access to banking rails as well as AUD pairs for the most popular cryptocurrencies.”

Compliance is key

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Australian users will have access to 170 crypto trading pairs through OKX. The exchange asserted a “huge appetite” for crypto in Australia and identified the country as a “key growth market” since March last year.

As of March 20, OKX’s Australian-focused services have moved from a Seychelles-based firm to two on-shore entities: OKX Australia Pty Ltd, which handles crypto exchange and fiat services, and OKX Australia Financial Pty Ltd, which manages derivatives and margin products.

Australian laws require local users to pass a suitability assessment and meet the definition of a wholesale client under the Corporations Act 2001.

To comply with these regulations, OKX has stopped offering its copy trading, yield-bearing products, and trading of certain tokens. Moreover, since March 20, users can only withdraw unsupported tokens.

Global expansion sees India exit

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This expansion into Australia follows OKX’s exit from India. In April, OKX notified its clients in India to wind up their positions as it ended its services in the country due to local regulations. In March 2023, digital asset service providers in India were included in the anti-money laundering framework. 

Exchanges must register with the Financial Intelligence Unit India (FIU IND) and adhere to regulations to operate. By the end of 2023, OKX had not completed the registration process, unlike 28 other companies.

Amidst this backdrop, OKX has become a popular platform for Bitcoin Runes users. Currently, the exchange accounts for 51.08% of Bitcoin Runes’ daily trading volume. 

According to data from Ordinals analytic platform GeniiData, trading activity for Runes on other platforms, such as UniSat and MagicEden, has declined since April. These platforms now hold a combined 48.83% market share. Almost all Bitcoin Runes trading activity is conducted through these three firms and their platforms.

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