Liechtenstein is a small german speaking country bordering Switzerland and Austria. It has a population of just 38 thousand people. The most note worthy Liechtensteiners include the tennis player Stephanie Vogt and composer Josef Rheinberger. Liechtenstein is in the crypto news this week because the Liechtenstein Cryptoassets Exchange (LCX) has announced a partnership with Binance. The partnership, predictably, is being called Binance LCX. Certainly, it promises to bring attention to Liechtenstein a.
This collaboration will see the introduction of a fiat to crypto exchange in Liechtenstein. Binance will bring their exchange management technical expertise to the table. They will develop and maintain a smooth and effective product. While LCX will assume responsibility for customer service, legal compliance, due diligence and also KYC/AML checks. Eventually, the joint venture will directly employ up to 15 people in the LCX offices in Vaduz.
“We are confident that Liechtenstein’s existing and future legal framework and practice provide a robust foundation for the Binance LCX and other blockchain companies to provide exceptional services here in Liechtenstein.” – Adrian Hasler, Prime Minister of Liechtenstein
The exchange itself will initially offer Swiss Francs and Euro as the fiat trading pair for a ‘major cryptocurrencies’. At time of writing there has been no confirmation of the exact make up of the coins listed on this exchange. It is safe to assume that it will include BTC, ETH, BCH and XRP at the minimum. The latter cryptocurrency noted may be a surprise to some, as the regulatory state of this asset is still up in the air. However, recent tweets from Michael Arrington, an XRP proponent and the co-founder of TechCrunch, and Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao have led some to believe that XRP/EUR and XRP/CHF support is likely.
Liechtenstein has a friendly and open stance towards cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology. This echoes developments in neighbouring Switzerland known for its “Crypto Valley” in the canton of Zug. Likewise, Ljubjlana in Slovenia is home to ‘Bitcoin City’. This type of forward thinking regulatory approach is crucial in facilitating widespread adoption of crypto.
Liechtenstein has moved in recent times to create laws which offer legal and regulatory clarity to businesses and customers with regard to crypto. In March, Liechtenstein lending institution Bank Frick began offering “direct investment” and cold storage for five cryptocurrencies; Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Litecoin, Ripple and Ethereum. The service is aimed primarily at “professional market participants and financial intermediaries.” The bank’s Chief client officer Hubert Büchel claimed that their crypto-related services “are in demand from companies across the whole of Europe.“ Consequently Liechtenstein is starting to establish itself as a small but important player in the crypto world.
This is not Binance’s first move into fiat to crypto exchanges. Uganda was announced in June as the first location for their fiat to crypto exchange. Although the global roll-out may be slow, it has become apparent that Binance is ready to tackle the lack of fiat support in exchanges worldwide with its own platforms. This promises to make it easier for people to buy crypto. Consequently helping to facilitate adoption.