According to a report by Irish Times, Irish crypto firms claim they are being denied banking services as a result of a new European directive yet to be implemented by the state. It’s been two years now since Irish firms that offer cryptocurrency services started complaining about having to open foreign bank accounts since they cannot do so in Ireland.
Irish laws don’t recognize cryptocurrency as a currency
Just the other day, Boinnex, a Bitcoin ATM machines provider which is headquartered in Cork city, saw its bank account with AIB shut down. The Irish crypto firm was notified via a letter back in October last year that the bank wants to end its relationship with the firm since digital currencies are not regulated in the country.
Indeed, Irish law does not regard digital currencies as a currency. In its defence, AIB Bank mentioned the delay in transposing the AMLD5 into law, which should have happened by the end of January. Furthermore, the aforementioned delay was caused by the country’s general elections which took place early in February; and the ensuing negligence by political parties to determine a new administration.
Irish crypto firms forced to seek solace abroad
According to the financial services provider, entering into a business relationship with crypto-related firms is far from the bank’s risk appetite. As per the founder of Boinnex, Bryan Tierney:
“We’ve been forced to get a banking partner abroad. A lot of companies in the space are in a similar situation. Some of these foreign banks charge exorbitant fees as they know they’re the only show in town.”
As per Mr.Tierney, the denial by the banking sector to serve Irish crypto firms has forced his; and several other firms facing the same challenge to open bank accounts in foreign countries. However, most of the foreign banks charge inflated fees, since they are aware of the monopoly advantage.