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U.S. crypto exchange Coinbase wins regulatory nod in Italy

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By Akriti Sharma and Tom Wilson

(Reuters) -Major U.S. crypto exchange Coinbase Global Inc has won approval from Italian regulators to continue to serve customers in Italy, it said in a blog on Monday.

Coinbase said it had met requirements from the Organismo Agenti e Mediatori (OAM), which oversees financial agents and credit brokers in Italy and implements anti-money laundering controls.

Financial watchdogs across the world are grappling with how to regulate the crypto market, which remains subject to patchy rules. Consumer protection, threats to financial stability and illicit usage of digital coins are among the top issues on regulators' agendas.

Under groundbreaking new rules agreed this month by the European Union, crypto companies will need a licence and customer safeguards to issue and sell digital tokens in the bloc.

The OAM says on its website it can collect and share with anti-mafia and anti-terrorism investigators in Italy data provided by crypto firms on their clients and operations.

"We are in the process of strengthening our presence across Europe," Nana Murugesan, Coinbase's vice president for international and business development, said on the blog. "Our goal is to grow our customer base by launching the Coinbase suite of retail, institutional, and ecosystem products."

Coinbase rival Binance, the world's largest exchange, said in May it had registered with the OAM.

(Reporting by Akriti Sharma in Bengaluru and Tom Wilson in London; Editing by Rashmi Aich and Emelia Sithole-Matarise)

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