Mastercard, the global payment giant, is set to conclude its cryptocurrency card partnership with Binance crypto exchange, as per a Bloomberg report. The termination is speculated to be linked to heightened regulatory scrutiny surrounding the troubled crypto exchange. The collaboration’s end will impact four crypto card programs in Latin American countries: Argentina, Brazil, and Colombia, effective September 22.
Program Impact and User Transition
Mastercard assured that its decision will not affect other existing crypto card programs. During the wind-down period, users will be able to convert their Binance wallet holdings. The collaborative initiative enabled cardholders to utilize their cryptocurrency holdings on the exchange to make payments in local fiat currencies.
Background and Regulatory Pressure
The partnership’s dissolution follows roughly a year after the initial launch of a prepaid card for Argentina residents. Regulatory issues have reportedly surrounded Binance on a global scale. The company and its CEO, Changpeng “CZ” Zhao, faced legal action by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for alleged violations of local securities laws. The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) also sued Binance for inadequate registration with the derivatives regulator. Additionally, the U.S. Department of Justice investigated Binance for permitting Russian users to breach U.S. sanctions.
Visa, another major player, reportedly halted the issuance of new co-branded cryptocurrency cards with Binance in Europe since July, reinforcing the impression that regulatory issues are prompting distancing between financial giants and the crypto exchange.
Responses and Ongoing Developments
Neither Mastercard, Visa, nor Binance have promptly addressed Cointelegraph’s request for comments on the matter. The situation underscores the challenging regulatory landscape facing cryptocurrency platforms, with concerns over compliance and legal implications shaping key decisions.