Cryptocurrency exchange Bybit has announced its departure from the Canadian market, citing reasons related to the country’s new crypto guidelines. 

Bybit confirmed the decision via a blog post and will leave immediately from today (31 May), meaning no new Bybit account openings will be allowed, while existing customers have been given a 31 July deadline to remove their funds from accounts. 

“It has always been Bybit’s primary objective to operate our business in compliance with all relevant rules and regulations in Canada,” a statement read. 

“In light of recent regulatory development, Bybit has made the difficult but necessary decision to pause the availability of our products and services.”

Bybit follows Binance in leaving the Canadian market due to a new regulatory guideline that was established in February. 

The Canadian Securities Administrators (CSA) ruled that crypto exchanges who wish to setup in the country will have to obtain approval through the financial regulator via an array of due diligence checks. 

Exchanges who fail to gain approval from the CSA would be barred from circulating any form of crypto and stablecoin trading within Canada which would result in penalisation. 

Binance expressed its disappointment in leaving the market due to these regulatory guidelines, stating in a company tweet they had “high hopes for the rest of the Canadian blockchain industry”. 

Canada has been viewed as the viable North American alternative to the US for crypto exchanges to set up after US financial regulators have been embroiled in numerous battles with exchanges since ramping up its efforts to penalise exchanges they deem to be circulating unregistered securities. 

Binance, Ripple, and Coinbase have all had their run-ins and court battles with US financial regulators, however, unlike Binance, Coinbase has lauded Canada’s recent regulatory developments. 

Whilst Coinbase may be at odds with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), its VP of International and Business Development, Nana Murugesan, told CoinDesk recently why they “love” the Canadian market. 

Murugesan explained: “There’s a couple of ways we see regulators acting: one is regulation by engagement; the other one is regulation by enforcement. The latter part is tough, because you don’t know what the rules are. But the Canadian regulator is definitely the former, which is regulation by engagement – which we love.”