U.S. sanctions have forced cryptocurrency exchange Uphold to shut off Venezuela.
The U.K.-based exchange noted that it was shutting down its support for Venezuela due to “increasing complexity of complying with U.S. sanctions.”
Uphold has ordered Venezuelan users to withdraw their funds as soon as possible.
Users will have until July 31 to empty the Bitcoin and other crypto assets from their account wallets and will have their accounts completely restricted as of September 30.
Venezuela boasts one of the highest cryptocurrency adoption in the world but U.S. sanctions against Venezuela have been a critical barrier to the emergence of cryptocurrency businesses in the country.
Expectedly, the decision has already sparked reactions from Venezuelans.
With the departure of Uphold, Venezuelans lose one more option to exchange cryptocurrencies and receive remittances; however, there are still equally secure alternatives.
Among the best known are the peer-to-peer exchange platform LocalBitcoins, Binance’s peer-to-peer market, decentralized exchanges such as Uniswap, the state-owned platforms Patria and PetroApp, as well as cryptocurrency exchanges legally authorized by the government to operate in the country.