The Malaysian Securities Commission (SC) has ordered the crypto exchange Huobi to stop operating in Malaysia. On 22nd May, Malaysian SC made a press release, where it said that the Huobi crypto exchange failed to register as a digital asset exchange (DAX), thus it was operating illegally in the country.
The authorities recognized that the exchange violated the Capital Markets and Services Act of 2007, which requires exchanges to obtain a license from Malaysian SC to become a Recognised Market Operator (RMO).
Because of this violation, the exchange was required to disable its mobile application on Apple Store, Google Play, and other platforms, as well as to shut down its website.
“Huobi Global Limited has also been directed to cease circulating, publishing or sending any advertisements, whether in email or on social media platforms, to Malaysian investors.”
Malaysian SC advised the country’s investors to withdraw their assets from the platform as well as to close their accounts. If not acted immediately, their continued operations could expose them to fraud, without the ability of local laws to protect them. The regulator then added, that Huobi CEO, Leon Li, should inside that the order is carried out.
The new order came as Huobi was trying to regain its market position after losing its predominant position to rivals over the past years, especially after it was forced to cease all Chinese operations in 2021.
In the meantime, Leon Li sold his controlling stake in Huobi, to About Capital, a Hong Kong-based asset manager in October 2022. The intent for this move was the acceleration of globalization plans as well as business expansion initiatives. Back then, the reports showed that Li would leave the company, but according to his LinkedIn, he still holds the position of CEO in Huobi.