If you are residing in Singapore and are interested in trading/investing in cryptocurrencies, you are most likely to come across the Binance platform.
Binance was founded by Changpeng Zhao in 2017 and has become the biggest (by volume) crypto exchange platform in the entire world.
However, if you search for Binance while residing in Singapore, Google will redirect you to a slightly different Binance Singapore (https://binance.sg) website.
Most people are not aware of the differences between the two and even are concerned about the legitimacy of Binance in Singapore.
In this article, we will attempt to differentiate the key differences between the platform and find out why Binance needed to launch a separate platform for Singapore only to shut it down in a few months’ time.
Why two versions of Binance?
Although there is no official statement from Binance on why they had to introduce a different version of Binance in Singapore, it is most likely because of compliance issues with the regulatory bodies.
All financial companies operating in Singapore must adhere to the rules and regulations of the Monetary Authority of Singapore.
Having a specific version of Binance helps the local government to regulate cryptocurrency trading better, keeping illegal activities like money laundering in check.
Having a localised version also helps facilitates opening accounts and makes it secure to deposit and withdraw money in local currency.
So, to target specific demography of people, Binance decided to launch Binance Singapore in an attempt to familiarise crypto trading in the local market.
Binance Singapore is not the only localised offering from Binance; they also have Binance.us, a localised version for the US market that is compliant with all their local rules and regulations.
The difference between Binance.com and Binance Singapore
Although Binance Singapore is just a localised version of the internationally accredited Binance.com, they do have some differences.
- Being the popular option, Binance.com offers a much wider selection of coins and services that are currently not available in Singapore. You can trade in futures and margins and also support trading of DeFi and NFTs, which is not possible in Binance Singapore.
- Binance.com has a variety of combos to choose from. For instance, if you wish to buy Dogecoin (DOGE), the DOGE/USDT and DOGE/BTC pairings on Binance.com allow you to do so using USD Tether (USDT) or Bitcoin (BTC). These pairings are not available on Binance Singapore.
- Your balance can be held in stablecoins like Binance USD (BUSD), USD Tether (USDT), and others. This helps you eliminate price fluctuations as stable coins are more reliable than other coins.
- Depositing and withdrawing money in SGD is set by default and is much easier, and takes less time.
- Binance requires all users to upload a photo ID to verify their identity. Using localised Binance makes the process of validating the ID much faster, resulting in a faster account opening process.
- Depositing and withdrawing funds to and from your local bank account is a simple process.
Overall, there is no drastic difference between the two versions; you can think of Binance Singapore as a stripped-down version of Binance.com, including features that are available in the Singapore market.
Is Binance still available in Singapore?
As of February 13th, 2022, Binance Singapore has withdrawn its operations in Singapore.
In an official statement, Binance reported, “Users of Binance Singapore will be notified through email of the next measures they must take once the site closes down.
Registrations, crypto, and currency deposits, and trading on Binance Singapore’s platform will all be closed with immediate effect.”
Although it was initially speculated that Binance had some regulatory restrictions that forced them to close their operation in Singapore, but it was later clarified by Binance CEO, CZ that, Binance made a sizable investment into the regulated exchange HG Exchange (HGX); this investment made Binance somewhat redundant in the local market.
This is why they choose to stop their operations in Singapore.
Binance announced that its operations in the city-state will now become a blockchain innovation hub, with incubation programs, blockchain education, and investments among its activities.
Which one should I use now?
You currently do not have the option to use Binance Singapore as it has ceased its operations altogether.
You can still use access the Binance.com website from Singapore, but given the current condition, we can not recommend you use Binance.com in Singapore.
In fact, Singapore users on Binance.com can’t access their deposits and make trades even on the global platform.
This is a big setback as Binance had one of the lowest fees available in the Singapore market.
If you’re a beginner, Crypto.com is easily the most beginner-friendly crypto exchange.
When Binance initially started its localised version for Singapore, it was an instant success, with many users preferring Binance Singapore over the international platform.
It was especially convenient for beginners who had little experience to get verified easily and start trading on the platform.
Binance Singapore was also easier to deposit in SGD, and withdrawals in local banks were both fast and secured.
But because of a change in business objective, Binance has decided to shut its operation completely, and using the international version comes with several issues that are hard to avoid.
This is why we currently do not recommend you to use Binance if you are residing in Singapore.
If our above recommendations don’t pique your interest, you can read our post on the best crypto exchanges in Singapore to select one for yourself too!