Bybit gets pre-approval in Kazakhstan as crypto custody service provider

Cryptocurrency exchange Bybit continues the expansion of its operations after receiving “in-principle” approval from regulators in Kazakhstan. 

On May 29, the exchange announced its pre-approval from Kazakhstan’s Astana Financial Services Authority (AFSA) to operate as a digital asset trading facility and as a custody services provider at the Astana International Financial Centre (AIFC).

Ben Zhou, the co-founder and CEO of Bybit said that he believes in the “promising potential” of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) as a region for growth in the crypto industry.

Zhou also stressed Bybit’s commitment to compliance with local regulations. This comes after Bybit was recently flagged by regulators in Japan for operating without registration.

“It has always been our primary objective to operate our business in compliance with relevant rules and regulations.” 

As it stands under the “in-principle” approval that was granted to Bybit, the company is subject to pre-conditions which will lead to permanent authorization to commence servicing locals after the application process is fully completed.

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Over the last few months, Bybit has been in the process of expanding its service offerings. On May 2, it announced it will begin to offer users crypto lending services

In March, the company collaborated with Mastercard to offer a new debit card for cryptocurrency payments.

The latest move to offer services in Kazakhstan comes as the country has been steadily developing itself as a regional hub for crypto, mining and blockchain.

Back in February local officials announced a new mandate that 75% of revenue made from crypto mining must be sold via a crypto exchange to crack down on tax evasion. A few months later, Kazakhstan revealed it collected around $7 million in crypto taxes for the year 2022.

Kazakhstan is currently in the pilot phase of its development of a digital currency.

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