This past week there’s been many rumors that Chinese cryptocurrency trading platforms would be shutting down shortly due to regulatory concerns. Now the China-based exchange BTCC has announced it will be shutting down operations on September 30.

The company — China’s oldest running exchange — said other services, including its BTCC Pool for miners, are not impacted and will continue to run. There’s no word on when, or indeed whether, it will reintroduce trading.

The exchange is the first major trading platform in the region to announce this decision. Following the exchange’s statement, the price of bitcoin has dropped significantly to a low of $3580 on Thursday morning.  

“After carefully considering the ‘Seven Regulatory Bodies’ announcement of preventing risks associated with token fundraising, BTCC has decided to immediately stop accepting new account registrations on the BTCC exchange,” explains CEO Bobby Lee’s translation of the announcement.

BTCC will stop all trading on the exchange on Saturday September 30th. We apologize for the inconvenience. Please note that BTCC’s pool is not affected; customers will still be able to use our mining pool services.

Other Chinese Exchanges Have Not Issued Closure Announcements…Yet

OkCoin and Huobi, two other leading Chinese exchanges, both confirmed to TechCrunch they had not received guidance from the government.

“As a Chinese enterpise, we are strictly compliant with the regulations, meanwhile, we put our users’ best interests as the top priority. Stay tuned with our announcement if there is any change,” a Huobi spokesperson added.

That might come sooner than you think. Well-connected Litecoin creator Charlie Lee — who is also the brother of BTC China CEO Bobby Lee — claims both exchanges will have talks with the government before the week is out.

China banned bitcoin trading for major institutions in December 2013, and a four-month freeze was imposed on trading this year due to security concerns. The space has come under increased scrutiny in 2017 following a boom in raising money via ICOs, which has already passed $1.7 billion this year, and soaring valuations for bitcoin and Ethereum. The former surged past $4,500 per coin this summer, and it even surpassed $5,000 on some exchanges.

 

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