Popular cryptocurrency exchange Binance will be terminating its crypto-backed debit card services in Latin America and the Middle East, the company’s customer support team said via Twitter on 24 August.
According to the announcement, although the exchange will be suspending its debit card services in the near future, users will still be able to claim refunds and disputes until 20 December, 2023. In a statement, the company said it will discontinue its services in the Middle East on 25 August, and those in Latin America by 21 September.
Although the company did not clarify the reason behind the decision, it did say that “only a tiny portion of our users (less than 1% of users in the markets mentioned) are impacted by this”. The move comes shortly after the company shut down its Binance Connect crypto payments services — which helped connect crypto businesses with the traditional finance system — due to “changing market and user needs”. Binance’s customer support said in their post:
“Binance accounts around the world are not affected. Where available, users can also shop with crypto and send crypto using Binance Pay, a contactless, borderless and secure cryptocurrency payment technology designed by Binance.”
First announced in April 2020, Binance’s crypto-backed debit card allowed users to pay for day-to-day goods and services like any other debit card, except that it was funded by the user’s crypto assets. The card quickly gained popularity — being shipped to Europe and several other markets as early as July 2020 — and was rolled out in Argentina last August, and in Brazil his January.