The Ministry of Culture and Information of the Republic of Kazakhstan has officially confirmed that it has blocked the Coinbase website from accessing local IP addresses since at least September.
According to the information announced today a local news agency, Kursiv, access to the Coinbase website was blocked by the order of the Ministry of Culture and Information. Ministry representatives explained to reporters that the request came from another government body, the Ministry of Digital Development, which accused Coinbase of violating the Digital Assets Act.
The Digital Assets Law, which came into force in February 2023, prohibits the issuance, trading and cryptocurrency exchange of digital currencies without a national license. The initial approval to begin operations was given by the Astana International Financial Center (AIFC), Kazakhstan’s special economic zone.
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To date, Binance, Bybit, CaspianEx, Biteeu, ATAIX, Upbit and Xignal&MT have been approved by the Astana Financial Services Authority, which regulates the AIFC.
The first news about Coinbase website access problems appeared when local media Telegram reported it in September. Finans.kz It reported that the “major Kazakh investment firewall” blocks access not only to Coinbase but also to Kraken and other major international cryptocurrency exchanges.
Kazakhstan has adopted a strict regulatory approach to cryptocurrencies, including its mining sector, which is among the largest in the world. In October, eight major crypto mining operators signed a public letter to President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev arguing that the mining industry was in a “very difficult situation” due to high energy prices for miners.
Translation by Walter Rizzo