Crypto exchange Bybit has announced that it has obtained a license to operate as an exchange and custody service in Cyprus. The third most visited crypto exchange in the world will start offering trading between crypto and fiat currency pairs, and crypto-related financial services.
Cyprus is the third most populous island in the Mediterranean Sea, with a population of 1.2 million people. In a press release, Ben Zhou, the co-founder and CEO of Bybit, explained the importance of expanding the group’s global presence, highlighting the role of crypto as a way to opt out of the legacy financial system. :
“We are excited to introduce Crypto Ark to Cyprus.”
Cyprus is growing into a crypto hotspot in the Mediterranean, in part driven by actions from the public sector. In 2022, Kyriacos Kokkinos, the president’s deputy minister for research at the time, explained that the country will become a hub for new disruptive technologies, including blockchain.
The Cypriot central bank previously warned against crypto, while a decade has passed since a run on Cypriot banks caused a 600% price increase for Bitcoin (BTC). In 2021, Cyprus expressed its intention to accept blockchain and crypto technology by advancing the Distributed Ledger Technology Law bill; however, in April 2023, the Cypriot Ministry of Finance decided not to proceed with the bill.
However, adoption levels are low compared to those observed on the island of Malta, another Mediterranean country. Malta offers three times as many blockchain-related jobs per capita and is often referred to as “Blockchain Island,” as Bitcoin OGs, including Adam Back, speak out. kindness in Malta’s crypto environment.
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In addition, the crypto industry behemoth Binance recently announced that it will deregister in Cyprus. Initially headquartered in China, Binance now hosts offices around the world and in crypto-friendly hotspots such as Dubai and Bahrain, leaving Cyprus to focus on larger markets.
Bybit recognizes the “Great potential of the Cyprus market,” and the newly approved license will help grow the local cryptocurrency ecosystem.
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