Solana DeFi Protocol Marinade Finance Blocks UK Users Over FCA Compliance Concerns
Marinade Finance, the leading DeFi protocol on Solana, has made a significant decision by blocking access for users in the United Kingdom.
The decision is a response to concerns related to Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) regulations.
Marinade Finance, the largest DeFi protocol on Solana, has restricted access for users in the United Kingdom, citing concerns related to Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) regulations. This decision, driven by the FCA’s strict new rules governing crypto promotions, could have far-reaching implications for the DeFi space.
Marinade Finance has a substantial share of the total value locked (TVL) on the Solana blockchain, totaling $248 million. However, for its UK-based users, the landing page now displays a warning message, although users are assured they can still withdraw liquidity, claim delayed tickets, or delay unstake via the platform’s SDK.
The FCA’s recently enforced regulations, aimed at restricting the marketing of cryptocurrency-related products and services, have been a major driver behind this move. Notably, even centralized crypto businesses like Bybit and Huobi have exited the UK market, while Binance has temporarily paused new UK sign-ups in response to the FCA’s stringent rules.
The geo-restrictions imposed by Marinade Finance and the earlier restrictions by Orca Finance, Solana’s largest decentralized exchange, highlight the growing impact of regulatory changes on the crypto space.
Restrictions are particularly unusual in decentralized protocols, which typically do not necessitate know-your-customer (KYC) checks. Marinade Finance’s decision and its potential repercussions underscore the evolving challenges faced by DeFi platforms in an increasingly regulated global landscape.
The UK has enforced stringent regulations on Big Tech as well. UK media regulator Ofcom recently called upon the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to investigate the significant control of the UK cloud market by Amazon and Microsoft. Ofcom’s concerns revolve around the limited choices for UK businesses in selecting cloud providers, as Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft collectively held a dominant 70-80% market share in 2022, with Google as a distant competitor at 5-10%.
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