China’s largest bank, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), has announced the banning of any Bitcoin trading related activity. This move has joined ICBC with around 10 other Chinese banks that have reacted following the PBOC’s Bitcoin crackdown. According to the China Post, ICBC said in a released statement,
“From this date, any institution or individual must not use accounts set up with our bank for the deposit and withdrawal … and transfer of funds for Bitcoin and Litecoin trading.”
As of now, Bitcoin is the most popular digital currency, and Litecoin is the second most widely accepted digital currency.
ICBC Bank Bans Bitcoin Trading
This move was done as a way to protect the public from the digital currency’s associated risks. The ICBC explained the ban was done to
“protect the property rights and interests of the public, prevent money laundering risks as well as to safeguard the status of the renminbi as the legal currency.”
It seems that digital currencies appear to be a threat for the yuan. In fact, the ICBC has threatened to close and suspend any bank accounts if customers disregard the new rules.
Around 10 Chinese banks have stopped providing Bitcoin companies’ services. These include what are known as China’s “Big Four”: Bank of China, China Construction Bank, ICBC, and Agricultural Bank of China.
In addition to the ICBC announcing the ban of Bitcoin trading, recently two other banks announced the same. China Guangfa Bank and Shanghai Pudong Development Bank Co Ltd both stated that customers are banned from Bitcoin trading with their bank accounts.
Those who do not comply will find their bank accounts suspended or shut down. The two banks specified on their websites, respectively, that customers will not be allowed to buy, sell or trade Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency using their bank accounts.
Even with the announcements of banks ceasing to provide Bitcoin companies services, Bitcoin’s price has not reacted as of yet. The digital currency’s price is currently around $440.