According to Russian crypto media, a list of crypto exchanges, including global platforms, have not imposed new restrictions on Russian users following the EU’s most recent sanctions round. The latest European sanctions target a variety of crypto-related services in an effort to increase pressure on Russia as the conflict in Ukraine escalates.
Following the EU’s ban on crypto services, major exchanges continue to operate in Russia.
Last week, the European Union imposed a slew of sanctions aimed at hammering Russia’s government, economy, and trade. The eighth package of EU restrictions, among other things, prohibited the provision of any cryptocurrency wallet, account, or custody services to Russian residents and entities.
While some companies in the industry reacted quickly and have already suspended operations with Russian accounts, a number of crypto exchanges have yet to comply with European requirements, according to a report on the crypto page of leading Russian business news portal RBC.
Binance, the world’s largest digital asset exchange by daily trading volume, is one of them. According to its support service, the company has not issued an official statement regarding the new sanctions and is continuing to operate as usual. Binance limited services for account balances greater than €10,000 ($11,000 at the time), as required by the EU’s fifth round of restrictions, which affected only “high-value” crypto services, in early April.
Coinbase, the leading American crypto trading platform, also complies with previous European crypto sanctions, while US-based Kraken did not impose restrictions on Russians in the spring and has not announced any changes in response to the new set of EU measures.
The cryptocurrency exchange FTX, which is registered in the island nation of Antigua and Barbuda, has not imposed any restrictions on Russian Federation users. The same is true for Garantex, another popular Russian trading platform that continues to work with Russian traders.
In response to EU penalties, Seychelles-registered Huobi Global, Okx, Kucoin, and Mexc Global have refrained from restricting Russian accounts, and Singapore-registered Bybit has told the publication that it will not impose sanctions against Russians.
Exmo, a regional leader in Eastern Europe and countries in the former Soviet space, sold its Russian business, as well as the rights to the Exmo.me domain and branding, to a local vendor in late April. Exmo.me continues to make cryptocurrency trading easier in Russia and its close partners, Belarus and Kazakhstan.
Cryptocurrency is viewed as a tool that allows Russians to export wealth and avoid financial sanctions. The idea of legalizing cross-border crypto payments has gained traction in Moscow, where authorities are working to implement regulations. According to Anatoly Aksakov, the head of the parliamentary Financial Market Committee, the EU’s decision to tighten crypto restrictions may stimulate the development of Russia’s own market for digital assets.