Changpeng Zhao, CEO of Bitcoin (BTC) and cryptocurrency exchange Binance, said “We have realized that we need a centralized entity to work well with regulators.”
His words, published in the Hong Kong newspaper South China Morning Post, indicate a turnaround for the world’s largest crypto exchange, based on its trading volume.
Since its founding in 2017, Binance has operated its popular digital currency platform without being licensed by state entities. The pressure from regulators in countries as diverse as the United Kingdom, Italy or Chile, opportunely reported by CriptoNoticias, seem to have had its effect.
“We need to have clear records of stakeholder ownership, transparency and risk controls,” says Zhao, who is perhaps best known by his initials, CZ. The 44-year-old businessman maintains that as Binance is the largest player in the cryptocurrency industry, they must be prepared for the change. “We are making changes to facilitate work with regulators,” he adds.
Among the news that were known in recent months, is CZ’s decision to step aside as the leader of the company he founded. Since the end of July this year, Binance has been searching for a new CEO with more experience in regulatory compliance.
Also, on August 20, the exchange established the obligation to present identity documents and a facial verification, in order to operate with them. Among the arguments given by the company on that occasion, was the prevention of money laundering and ensuring that taxes are paid where they are due.
BTC owns properties that support its use as a national currency. Despite Binance giving in to regulatory pressure, a fact that some have considered a “betrayal” of alleged principles underlying cryptocurrencies, the Chinese-born businessman took advantage of the interview to express the superiority he sees in BTC over fiat money. According to Zhao, many countries would even benefit if they did not have a national currency of legal tender.
Although he does not mention it, CZ makes an obvious reference to El Salvador, a nation where, for a week, bitcoin has the status of legal tender, along with the US dollar.
On the digital currencies issued by central banks, a terrain dominated by China, which is in an advanced stage of testing its digital yuan, Changpeng Zhao considers that they could favor the adoption of decentralized cryptocurrencies. “Once people start using central bank digital currencies locally, they will use BTC to pay their friends in other countries,” says the businessman.