OKX cryptocurrency exchange is closing its services in India nearly three months after the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of the Indian Ministry of Finance issued compliance notices to nine foreign crypto exchanges.

In a notice sent to Indian users on March 21, OKX asked users to close their accounts and redeem funds before April 30. The crypto exchange cited local regulatory hurdles as the key reason behind the decision. 

OKX notice to Indian users. Source: OKX

The FIU requested the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology block the websites of the notified crypto exchanges within two weeks of the notice.

After authorities blocked its website and application in January, OKX implemented a new registration process with rigorous Know Your Customer checks; however, its notice to users suggests the exchange will no longer operate in India.

India remains a tricky domain for foreign crypto exchanges to navigate despite being a thriving market due to a lack of clear regulatory guidelines and strict government actions.

Although discussions regarding a regulatory framework have been ongoing for almost four years, the Indian government appears to have no intention of acknowledging or subjecting the emerging crypto market to legal oversight.

While there is no timeline on when India could get formal crypto regulations, the hefty 30% tax on crypto income, with no provision to offset losses along with a 1% tax deducted at source (TDS) on each crypto transaction, has forced several established players to shift their base elsewhere. 

In a recent interview, the Indian Finance Minister said they cannot treat crypto the same way as fiats, which is why the government has yet to offer a clear regulatory structure.

However, this has been the routine answer of government bodies worldwide and has nothing to do with regulating the crypto market, as market participants are not asking to deem crypto equal weightage to national fiat but rather clearer regulations quite similar to the traditional stock market.

OKX has yet to respond to Cointelegraph’s request for comments.