Mastercard and crypto exchange Binance will close four of their crypto card programs in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia and Bahrain effective September 22, a spokesperson for Mastercard said via email on Thursday.

The Binance Card allows users to make payments in traditional currencies funded by their cryptocurrency holdings on the exchange.

Mastercard’s website also lists partnerships with crypto exchanges including Gemini. The spokesperson added that this decision will not affect Mastercard’s other crypto card programs.

Binance is facing legal and regulatory challenges. US regulators sued the crypto exchange and its CEO Changpeng Zhao in June for allegedly operating a “web of fraud”. Binance has said it will “vigorously” defend itself. Mastercard’s head of crypto and blockchain, Raj Dhamodharan, told Reuters in April that the company was looking for more partnerships with crypto firms. He declined to comment on Binance specifically, but said that any card program “goes through thorough due diligence” and is constantly monitored.

A Mastercard spokesperson declined to comment on why the Binance program is ending or who made the decision.

Binance did not immediately respond to a request for comment sent via email. The exchange’s customer support account on X, formerly known as Twitter, said earlier Thursday that the Binance Card “will no longer be available to users in Latin America and the Middle East.”

first published: 24 August 2023 | 11:32 PM First

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