Many of the Irish companies which are providing cryptocurrency related services or which are trading in cryptocurrencies are not able to access formal banking facilities. They have complained that either, they have to stop trading or they have to set up foreign bank accounts in order to trade in cryptocurrencies.
One company which goes by the name of Bitcove stated that in spite of being awarded as the best business start-up by the bank of Ireland, it was not getting access to the formal banking channels. Many of the start-ups have complained that in the recent times, banks have withdrawn banking facilities to the start-ups. In many of the cases, start-ups are getting their applications rejected for opening a bank account. As a result, they are not able to operate their companies.
Bitcove is a cryptocurrency exchange which was founded in 2014. Previously, it had banking facilities from quite a few banks like AIB, Permanent TSB and even bank of Ireland. However, in the last few days, all of these banks have closed their banking accounts. This has resulted in a standstill for the cryptocurrency exchange.
Ever since then, the cryptocurrency exchanges opened a bank account with other banks in the European Union. As a result, they have found more advanced and liberal banking partner.
Death knell for cryptocurrency businesses:
In many of the cases, this withdrawal of banking facilities has resulted in the death knell for the cryptocurrency businesses. One such business is Eircoin. This was actually the oldest Bitcoin broker in Ireland. Due to the withdrawal of the banking facilities, they are not able to run their business any longer. As a result, they are being forced to close the business.
In a recent statement which was released by Bank of Ireland, it is clearly stated that it has stopped providing banking facilities to cryptocurrency businesses. In the same statement, it also mentions that it does not obstruct any customer from transacting in the cryptocurrency. This clearly indicates that the customers might be able to use their credit cards in order to fund their cryptocurrency accounts. However, these accounts might not be held in the Irish cryptocurrency exchanges since most of them have been banned from the formal banking channels.
According to AIB, they are not discriminating against any industry. Nor have they been selectively eliminated the banking facilities for a few companies. It is only when the companies are not sticking to the anti-money laundering norms as well as know your customer norms; they are withdrawing the banking facilities.
It remains to be seen whether in the future, the Irish cryptocurrency businesses are able to gain back the access to their formal banking channels or whether they have to operate through other banks in the European Union.
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