The Qatar Financial Centre Regulatory Authority has announced a ban on all virtual asset services, International Investment reports. The ban will reportedly cover all digital asset trading, transfers, payments, and investments, except digital securities and other instruments regulated by the nation’s central bank or Financial Markets Authority.
As the report notes:
Virtual Asset Services include exchange between virtual assets and fiat currencies; exchange between one or more forms of virtual assets; transfer of virtual assets; safekeeping and/or administration of virtual assets or instruments enabling control over virtual assets; and participation in and provision of financial services related to an issuer's offer and/or sale of a virtual asset.
According to reports, the ban will prevent cryptocurrency trading and conversion of digital assets into traditional fiat currencies. It will also forbid trading of different types of digital assets, unregistered custodial services, and other “virtual asset” financial services.
The announcement comes nearly one year after Qatar’s central bank told the nation’s financial institutions that bitcoin trading is illegal. At that time, the banks were warned that they could face penalties if they chose to open or manage accounts that dealt with cryptocurrencies in any way.