Bulgarian Banks Shutting Down Bitcoin Exchanges In the Country

Matthew Tompkins · December 8, 2017 · 11:00 am

Reports are emerging online of banks in Bulgaria cracking down on cryptocurrency exchanges and users.

Reports that banks in Bulgaria were refusing to deal with cryptocurrency exchanges emerged yesterday in online forums, with exchange owners saying that they were being informed by banks in Bulgaria that they were refusing to let them hold accounts with them.

There are few other details at the moment, but its affects are sure to be felt throughout the cryptocurrency market in Bulgaria as users are mainly rendered unable to trade. Services such as LocalBitcoins.com are also believed to be affected, with a few users registered in the country’s main city of Sofia.

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Its a blow for the country which has, like many others, embraced the burgeoning Fintech sector so far. The forum post below, outlines that the exchange owner believes the bank was acting for itself rather than as an exercise in enforcing government regulation. Ndilkov, a cryptocurrency exchange owner, wrote:

UBB informed us a few days ago that they were closing down our accounts for trading in Crippe currencies. After a conversation with one of the bank’s bosses, I realized it was the decision of the bank’s owner, it was not for regulation. Then we talked to Societe Generale and Piraeus separately – both banks have no problem with companies working with Crippe currencies.

Forum users are obviously very upset at these developments which they see as holding back the country’s development in the Fintech industry. As most other countries endorse them, they fear Bulgaria and its banks may be taking a step backwards.

Fintech Progression In Bulgaria

This is an interesting development as there’s been a keen interest in cryptocurrency and blockchain technology within the country. Bitcoinist previously covered how business schools in Bulgaria are running blockchain and cryptocurrency courses as well as announcing plans to accept Bitcoin for tuition payment in future.

Affected exchanges include Cix.bg, Crypto.bg, and Cryptobank.bg.

Are you in Bulgaria? Can you confirm these reports? Let us know in the comments below.

Images courtesy of Bitcoinist archives and Pixabay.

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