Chilean Court Orders Banks Re-Open Cryptocurrency Exchange Accounts

in cryptocurrency •  2 months ago

Chile’s Court for the Defense of Free Competition (TDLC – Tribunal de  Defensa de la Libre Competencia) has ordered two banks, Banco del Estado  de Chile (Bancoestado) and Itau Corpbanca (Itau), to re-open the  accounts of a local cryptocurrency exchange, Buda, as a result of its  lawsuit against 10 banks,  Bloomberg reported. 

Earlier this month, Buda (formerly Surbtc) and other exchanges sued a  total of 10 banks in the country after they closed the exchange’s fiat  accounts, along with the accounts of Orionx and Cryptomkt exchanges,  CoinTelegraph reported

The ten banks named in the suit include Bancoestado, Itau, Santander,  Bci, Banco de Chile, Scotiabank, Bice, and Bbva, according to Diario  Financiero. 

The news outlet elaborated on the court’s Thursday ruling: 

 “The ruling is an unprecedented precautionary measure binding  Bancoestado and Itau to enter into a new current account contract with  the operator Buda, while the case is proceeding.” 

The court further added in its order for the two banks to sign a  contract with Buda “under the same terms of the contracts described  between said parties previously,” the publication conveyed and quoted  the court declaring, “the foregoing, inasmuch as the requested  precautionary measure is necessary to prevent the eventual negative  effects of the conduct submitted to this Tribunal.” 

Buda “also asked the court to punish the 10 banks with the maximum of the fine established in DL211,  with costs, and ordered [them] to stop the practice indicated, without  prejudice to other measures deemed appropriate to the effect,” the news  outlet reported that Buda accused the banks of displaying  “anticompetitive behavior.” 

 “Anticompetitive behavior consisting of abuse of their collective  dominance position and by engaging in an abusive exploitation that  excludes their dominant position…with the purpose or effect of  preventing, restricting and hindering competition in the affected  markets,” Buda said. 

In an interview  with Cointelegraph, Buda CEO Guillermo Torrealba expressed that there  was no laws, rulings, or legislation that prevent crypto firms from  operating and that the decision was from the banking sector which feels  threatened by cryptocurrency like JP Morgan expressed a few months ago  in an annual report. 

 “There hasn’t been one regulator, legislator or government official  saying that cryptocurrencies aren’t legal, it was just the decision of a  very powerful sector of the economy: the banking industry.” 

Mario Marcel, the governor of the Central Bank of Chile, previously spoke at an event in the UK last year, according to a transcript published  by the institution on its website over the weekend. The event was  hosted by the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance. 

During Marcel’s speech, he brought up the subject of the future of  blockchain and distributed ledgers, noting that financial sector firms  are experimenting with applications and possible commercial uses for  businesses.  In fact, Wall St. tested digital currency last year in a private closed meeting. 

“Central bank digital currencies (CBDC) seems to lead inevitably to the  replacement of the classical role of central banks at the top of a  tiered liquidity system to that of a massive retailer, where  deposit-taking may soon combine with loan-making,” Marcel told the  audience, adding: 

 “This means that a real CBDC may still be many years away.” 

However, Marcel agreed that technological innovation should not be  held back by strict regulations, as many cryptoanarchists fear will  ultimately happen, if central banks get involved in the realm of  cryptocurrency. 

Bitcoin is currently trading at [FIAT: $9,297.05] while Ethereum is trading at [FIAT: $678.58] according to Coin Market Cap at the time of this report. 

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