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With BTCChina Ready to Stop Withdrawals, China Bitcoin Gates are Closing

On Oct. 23, BTCChina, the largest Bitcoin trading platform in China, has updated an announcement that it will shut down the exchange business and stop providing withdrawal services on Oct. 30.

For speeding up its shutdown, BTCChina is going to adjust the withdrawal transaction fee to remind and urge users to withdraw as soon as possible.

Until Oct. 25, the platform will remain with the previous withdrawal transaction fee standards:

  • Withdrawal transaction fee for BTC: 0.0015 BTC;
  • Withdrawal transaction fee for LTC: 0.001 LTC;
  • Withdrawal transaction fee for ETH: 0.01 ETH;
  • Withdrawal transaction fee for BCC: 0.0005 BCC.

Start on Oct. 25, new withdrawal transaction fee standards will be activated:

  • Withdrawal transaction fee for BTC: 0.0045 BTC;
  • Withdrawal transaction fee for LTC: 0.003 LTC;
  • Withdrawal transaction fee for ETH: 0.03 ETH;
  • Withdrawal transaction fee for BCC: 0.0015 BCC.

After Oct. 30, the platform is very likely to stop the service of online withdrawals. By announcing the increase in withdrawal transaction fees beforehand, BTCChina wants to check out and return all money on time.

With the final date coming, the largest Bitcoin trading platform is to say goodbye to its users and the market.

The job of checking on and returning funds is the last step of BTCChina’s shut down. On Sep. 27, the platform stopped accepting CNY and Digital Asset deposits. On Sep. 30, it stopped accepting fiat and cryptocurrencies and shut down all trading functionality on BTCChina Exchange.

Besides BTCChina, other Bitcoin Chinese trading platforms like OKCoin and Huobi have also announced that they will close CNY trading market based on the “Seven Regulatory Bodies” Announcement issued before by the regulators.

Hopes

However, though the Chinese government currently bans Bitcoin trading, the government didn’t consider it absolutely illegal. Some scholars believe that this means that Chinese government might free Bitcoin trading under certain circumstances in the future.

When the regulation system is complete, the Chinese government might reopen the gate for Bitcoin.

Additionally, both Huobi and OKCoin stated that they would keep communicating with regulators and try to recover CNY trading market in the future.

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ViaBTC Fleeing China's Shores Amid Ban Fears

ViaBTC, a large Chinese cryptocurrency exchange announced its plans to open another platform based outside the mainland of China as they face pressure from the government who have cracked down on exchanges and ICOs.

The exchange is urging its customers to withdraw their coins from the platform before Sep. 25 cut off when ViaBTC will stop its domestic service.

There has not been an official time for the relaunch away from mainland China, but ViaBTC obviously sees this as their best option to remain functional as the Chinese government remains hard-nosed to digital currencies.

Enough liquidity to withdraw

“A third of our customers come from outside China, and I believe these overseas users will continue to use the ViaBTC platform, so we can still provide value. We have enough liquidity to support all of our customers’ withdrawals,” Yang Haipo, chief executive of the exchange said.

ViaBTC have heeded orders from Beijing that called for the cease of Bitcoin trading after a small period of speculation following the ICO ban. Other large firms such as BTCChina, OKCoin and Huobi will also close their doors on the Chinese market.

The later two exchanges were given leeway by the Chinese government to operate until the end of October. Upon the closure of them later this year, however, the Chinese Bitcoin exchange market will officially be terminated.

Affecting the global market

There is no mistaking that the news from China has caused a huge ripple in the market.

Bitcoin prices have soared over the past 12 months, jumping from about $595 to an all-time high of $4,950 on Sep. 1. Since China announced its ICO ban and ordered the closure of exchange platforms, Bitcoin prices have plunged, trading at about $3,663 towards the end of this week.

This hardline stance from one of the bigger Bitcoin trading, mining and using countries has seen much of the exuberance around the recent boom lessen as many other countries wait and see what the future holds.

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Chinese Bitcoin Enthusiasts, Investors Flee Monitored WeChat for Telegram

Because of the high level of state monitoring and policing of individuals, Bitcoin enthusiasts have deflected from WeChat in China, as it is the country’s dominant messaging app that is approved by the government.

Other encrypted messaging platforms, like Telegram, have seen a surge in Bitcoin users setting up groups which have mushroomed in quick succession.

Personally liable

China has cracked down firstly on ICOs, then recently, the rumors of exchange shutdowns seem to be coming to fruition, and they have also implemented rules on the messaging sites like WeChat.

Administrators are personally liable for what is said on groups and in messages that they run, thus, users of exchanges OKCoin, Huobi and BTCChina are all migrating away from services which are in the Chinese government’s reach.

There has been groups and users popping up on Telegram talking about a range of Bitcoin related matters, such as how to transfer their digital tokens overseas to more effective ways to protect privacy, to initial coin offerings.

WeChat Rules

These rules that have been placed on the messaging services have delivered a rare setback as the crackdown on information shared has converged with the tightening regulations on Digital currencies.

“It’s partially due to fears of Bitcoin oversight, but I think it has more to do with the new rules on WeChat,” said Jake Smith, general manager at Bitcoin.com, who manages a 500 people English language group on WeChat.

WeChat has to adhere to Chinese governmental laws which include a censoring of topics, filtering images, deleting private and public accounts without user consent and storing information sent via its platforms for at least six months on its servers.

“If you are a group chat leader you have two choices, either you are going to super actively monitor the group, because your livelihood is at stake or you’re going to delete the group,” said Lokman Tsui, an assistant professor at the School of Journalism and Communication at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. “It’s a chilling effect.”

The safe haven of Telegram

Cryptocurrency groups on WeChat has been quick to disband as the tough stance on digital currencies in China continues to gain momentum.

While there are no figures on how many people have done so, at least 30 such groups have appeared, with some already attracting more than 1,000 users in a single room, mostly speaking Chinese. OKCoin, Huobi and BTCChina’s telegram groups are not officially run by the companies, according to the notices.

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Crying wolf: Now for real, Bitcoin Exchange BTCCHINA will Close by 30 September!?

As a result, during this month of many official and non-official statements, and regulations by Chinese Government and regulatory agencies regarding Bitcoin, Cryptocurrencies, and banning ICOs, even the latest rumor on banning Bitcoin-to-fiat exchange. China’s second largest cryptocurrency exchange BTCCHINA has announced and confirmed it is shutting down on September 30.

Also as a direct impact of above mentioned official actions of Chinese Government regarding Cryptocurrency market in China, Bitcoin continues to decline in price, as China was seen as one of the biggest market for Bitcoin and other Cryptocurrencies.


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