On Sunday, the global payments provider PayPal made an interesting announcement. According to PayPal, from this week residents of the U.K. will be able to buy, hold as well as sell cryptocurrencies through PayPal for the first time in the company’s history.
Its customers will have the opportunity to access Bitcoin, Ether, Litecoin, and Bitcoin Cash through PayPal’s website and mobile app. Its latest announcement marks the expansion of PayPal’s cryptocurrency services beyond the U.S. In November of 2020, its crypto trading and payments went live for all eligible customers in the U.S.
By offering its cryptocurrency services to people in the U.K., PayPal could play an important role in increasing exposure to digital assets in the country. Among all European countries, the company’s penetration is highest in the U.K. at over 2 million monthly active users.
Information about the company’s crypto expansion plans has been circulating since last month. In July, the current CEO of PayPal Dan Schulman told investors that the U.K. is likely to get the service soon. Furthermore, the global payments giant is also eyeing developments in decentralized finance, or DeFi. It is a possible precursor to future integration plans.
When it comes to regulations, the U.K.’s Financial Conduct Authority, or FCA continues to take measures against cryptocurrency exchanges. The FCA is increasingly cracking down on cryptocurrency exchanges that don’t meet its registration requirements.
This summer, it ordered one of the world’s most famous cryptocurrency exchanges to stop all regulated activities in the country. The country’s financial regulator said in a statement that Binance Markets Limited is not permitted to undertake any regulated activity in the U.K. It also added that no other entity in the Binance Group holds any of the necessary permits to operate in the country.
The regulator does not regulate cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin or Ether. Nevertheless, its mandate governs derivatives trading, which includes futures contracts and options. Also, digital assets that are deemed to be securities fall under the Financial Conduct Authority’s purview.
PayPal is cooperating with regulators in the U.K. as well as around the world according to Jose Fernandez da Ponte, the company’s representative. He serves as a senior executive for PayPal’s crypto division. His words show that PayPal understands the importance of regulations. It is willing to address various topics related to crypto services.
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