Global crypto firm Binance and Thailand based energy producer Gulf Energy have entered a joint venture to establish a new digital-asset business in the country. Binance has a huge presence in Asia, and it looks like it is getting bigger.
According to a filing with the Stock Exchange of Thailand, the new venture, called Gulf Binance received approval from the Thailand Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), to commence operations of its digital asset business earlier this month.
A New Channel For Binance
Gulf Binance’s digital asset platform will offer a comprehensive suite of services, including cryptocurrency and digital token exchange and broker services. Initially, the platform will operate on an invite-only basis. Plans are underway to expand access to digital asset services for Thai citizens in 2024.
Through this joint venture, Gulf Energy aims to enhance the level of service in Thailand’s digital asset sector. Additionally, the partnership is expected to foster advancements in the country’s blockchain ecosystem, paving the way for further innovation and growth in the years to come.
Binance and Gulf Energy have teamed up since January 2022 to explore business options, including establishing a crypto platform or related business in the Thai market. The strategic collaboration is also focused at working with policymakers, regulators, and companies to “develop the crypto and blockchain ecosystem in Thailand.”
On May 26, Thailand’s Ministry of Finance granted Gulf Binance licenses to operate a digital asset business. Gulf Binance can now run a SEC-regulated crypto exchange in the country.
Gulf Energy Development Public Company Limited is a leading player in the energy sector in Thailand. The company has a diverse portfolio of power generation businesses, including gas-fired power plants, renewable energy projects, and power trading.
Gulf Energy is also involved in digital asset infrastructure. The company was reportedly a key investor of BAM Trading Services, the company behind Binance.US.
Binance’s Compliance Efforts
Binance has been subject to regulatory scrutiny in several jurisdictions, including the US, UK, Japan, and Singapore among others.
- Thailand is no exception. In 2021, the Thai SEC filed a criminal complaint against Binance with the Economic Crime Suppression Division of the Royal Thai Police (ECD) for operating without a license.
- Binance was accused of violating the Emergency Decree on Digital Asset Businesses, which was enacted in 2018 to regulate cryptocurrency trading in Thailand.
- Binance denied the allegations and said that it was working with the Thai SEC to resolve the matter. The company also said that it was committed to complying with Thai law and regulations. With Gulf Binance, It is likely that Binance will have positive developments in Thailand.
In recent years, the leading crypto exchange has made efforts to work with regulators and improve its compliance practices. The company has hired compliance officers and established offices in a number of jurisdictions.
- In 2021, Binance obtained a license to operate in Malta, one of the first major jurisdictions to regulate cryptocurrency exchanges. The company has also applied for licenses in a number of other jurisdictions, including France, Italy, and Spain.
- However, not all efforts have been met with success. Binance still faces regulatory challenges in many countries. The US financial watchdogs launched an investigation into the company.
- Earlier in October, Binance announced its partnership with Rebuilding Society, a locally regulated company, in an effort to comply with the updated regime regarding cryptocurrency promotions of the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
However, the UK policymakers briefly imposed restrictions on Binance’s partner, leading to a temporary halt of the exchange’s services to UK consumers. Binance was previously forced to suspend trading in its derivatives products in the UK after the FCA banned the sale of these products to retail investors.