ICBC, the World’s Largest Bank, Blocked Bitcoin in China

The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) joins a host of other Chinese banks that will prohibit bitcoin businesses.

The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) is not just the biggest in China, but the largest bank in the world by total assets and market capitalization. Photo: Eightsbar/Flickr

The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) is not just the biggest in China, but the largest bank in the world by total assets and market capitalization. Photo: Eightsbar/Flickr

More and more Chinese banks are reporting they will close account that operate with bitcoin businesses, even though the official announcement by People’s Bank of China (PBOC) about the prohibition of operations with bitcoin related firms has not been made.

One of the latest announcements was made by the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), that is not just biggest bank in China but also the largest bank in the world by the number of total assets and market capitalization.

ICBC stated: “From this date, any institution or individual must not use accounts set up with our bank for the deposit and withdrawal […] and transfer of funds for Bitcoin and Litecoin trading,”

Again the bank pointed out the reasons for the decision made such as: “ the move aimed to protect the property rights and interests of the public, prevent money laundering risks, as well as to safeguard the status of the renminbi as the legal currency.”

The ICBC ban comes right after a day or two of at least 10 other Chinese banks publising similar official announcements about virtual currency prohibiting their bank accounts forbitcoin transactions.

Those banks include the CMB (China Merchants Bank), CCB (China Construction Bank), BOC (Bank of China), CEB (China Everbright Bank), Pingan Bank, Huaxia Bank, ABC (Agricultural Bank of China), CGB, SPD Bank, and Industrial Bank.

The announcements have been expected assuming that the 10th May PBOC deadline has been all over the news.

Moreover, the bitcoin price in China has actually went up over the past two days, and at press time equals ¥2768 ($444) on China’s now-largest exchange, OKcoin.

Global Bitcoin Summit Begins Tomorrow

The deadline of central bank was most likely set to occur at the same time with two-day Global Summit, scheduled to start tomorrow morning in Beijing.

Although the bitcoin community has been on a positive wave and is pressing on with the conference, there still have been some problems.

The CEOs of five major Chinese exchanges announced that they withdrew from official participation in this weekend’s Global Bitcoin Summit in Beijing.

The CEOs stated in the announcement that theyhad agreed no longer participate in any public bitcoin events, e.g. meetings and conference. Moreover, they said they would not engage in excessive speculation, and report all xhanges to the authorities.

FXBTC Chinese bitcoin exchange, has shut down due to restrictions on its banking services that have resulted from the central bank’s policies.

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