Cryptocurrency News From Japan: May 24 – May 30 in Review

This week’s headlines from Japan included GMO Coin exchange polling customers on their view of digital assets, Lisk opening a base in Japan, Bitflyer showing 2019 net losses, blockchain startup LayerX securing significant funding, and two entities reported successful collaborative blockchain-based securities experiments. 

Check out some of this week’s crypto and blockchain headlines,

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Researchers Design Blockchain-Based Digital Court In Japan

A group of researchers has devised a blockchain-based mechanism to perform legal functions in a so-called “digital court,” according to an April 6 announcement.

Professors Hitoshi Matsushima from the University of Tokyo, and Shunya Noda from the University of British Columbia, have been leading the project, which aims to settle legal disputes without the need for a “costly legal process.”

In the announcement,

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China’s Oldest Exchange OKCoin Readies for Move Into Japan

OKCoin, one of the oldest exchanges in China, is continuing its crypto exchange business expansion, announcing on March 30 that it has officially secured licensing in Japan.

OKCoin has been anticipating this day

Per its announcement, OKCoin Japan has completed its registration with the Kanto Local Finance Bureau. According to the firm,

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Japan's Financial Regulator Launches Global Blockchain Governance Initiate

Japan’s financial regulator announced the launch of its global Blockchain Governance Initiative Network (BGIN) on March 10. The BGIN intends to foster the “sustainable development of the blockchain community.”

The Financial Services Agency Japan (JFSA) announced the new initiative during the “BG2C – Special Online Broadcasting Panel Discussion,” which the JFSA hosted in partnership with Nikkei Inc.

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Japan Uneased by Chinese CBDC, Plans on Digital Yen in ‘2 to 3’ Years

China continues to pull ahead in the central bank digital currency race as more details on its secretive digital yuan project intermittently surface. As a result, more countries are beginning to worry about the potential implications.

Over the past few weeks, a number of Japanese lawmakers have publicly expressed their preference for a CBDC controlled by the Bank of Japan.

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Japan Crypto Exchanges Face Imminent Margin Trading Limits: Report

Bitcoin (BTC) and cryptocurrency exchanges in Japan will face significant restrictions on margin trading as soon as this Spring, according to reports.

Referencing sources at Japan’s finance regulator, the Financial Services Agency (FSA), local English-language news outlet Japan Times revealed plans to limit margin leverage to twice the total of traders’ deposits.

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Japan Security Token Offering Association: The Way of Self-Regulation

Security token offerings, or STOs, have more or less taken the mantle from their semi-defunct counterpart, the initial coin offering (ICO). Still, the extreme rise and subsequent fall of the ICO has left quite an impression on the cryptocurrency industry.

At its peak prevalence in 2017, this novel fundraising prototype accumulated a total of $6.2 billion — but it wasn’t set to last.

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Cryptocurrency Donations to Politicians Legal In Japan Says Internal Affairs Minister

Cryptocurrency donations to political parties received a thumbs up from Japan’s internal affairs and communications minister Sanae Takaichi at a press conference Tuesday.

According to a report by local media Kyodo News and syndicated by Reuters, Takaichi said political donations in cryptocurrency do not have to be disclosed under the Political Funds Control Law,

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Rakuten, SBI, Monex Launch Japan STO Association: Official

Six major Japanese brokerage firms such as SBI Securities and Rakuten Securities officially established Japan Security Token Offering (STO) Association.

The four other members of the new association include Nomura Securities, Daiwa Securities, Kabu.com Securities and Japan’s financial giant Monex, who officially announced the news on Oct. 1.

Headquartered in Tokyo,

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Crypto News From Japan: Sept. 2–8

Japan, one of the leading markets for cryptocurrencies, has seen a series of important developments for the cryptocurrency and blockchain industries this week. The country’s financial regulator, the Financial Services Agency (FSA), has licensed crypto-related businesses. Japanese Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Taro Aso noted that regulators need to find new approaches to address emerging technologies like cryptocurrencies and blockchain.

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Japan Grants Crypto Exchange License to Messaging Giant LINE

LVC Corporation, the digital asset- and blockchain-focused arm of Japanese messaging giant LINE, has obtained a crypto exchange operating license from Japan’s financial regulator.

The news was reported by Cointelegraph Japan on Sept 6.

Trading for 5 major cryptocurrencies

As previously reported, LVC Corp.’s trading platform, to be dubbed BITMAX,

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Crypto News From Japan: Week in Review

Japan is a friendly jurisdiction for cryptocurrency trading and development, having eliminated the consumption tax on Bitcoin (BTC) trading in 2017, after which it recognized the coin as legal tender. This week in Japan, a crypto exchange that was hacked earlier this year has closed its doors, while the central bank has come out as bullish on blockchain technology.

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BitFlyer and Tpoint Japan Team Up to Offer Bitcoin Loyalty Program

Cryptocurrency exchange bitFlyer and technology services company Tpoint Japan announced a new partnership that allows local customers to exchange loyalty program points for Bitcoin (BTC) and earn rewards for paying in crypto. The official press release states:

“As part of our mission of ‘Making the world simpler with blockchain’, we will continue to contribute to the further development of a sound virtual currency industry.

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Japan to Solarize Its Burgeoning Digital Economy, Expert Take

Society is now witnessing the implementation of digital currencies, artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain technology worldwide. These new digital technologies necessitate very high consumption of electric energy, which is currently produced with coal and fossil fuels that have adverse environmental effects. A global shift toward green energy will require the removal of the technological/infrastructural,

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Japan to Look Into the Impact of Facebook’s Libra Ahead of G7

Japanese authorities are investigating the impact of Facebook’s Libra stablecoin, Cointelegraph Japan reported on July 12.

Per the report, Japanese authorities have set up a liaison conference tasked with investigating the impact of Facebook’s stablecoin on monetary policy and financial stability. The conference will reportedly consist of the Bank of Japan, the Ministry of Finance and the Financial Services Agency and has already started meeting this week.

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Bank of Japan: Cash Prevents Digital Currencies With Negative Interest

Japan’s second most senior banking figure has said central banks cannot use digital currencies to enforce negative interest rates, Reuters reported on July 5. 

Speaking at an event held by the publication, Masayoshi Amamiya, deputy governor of the Bank of Japan, said that states issuing digital currency with a negative interest rate would force inhabitants towards cash. 

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Cashless-Bound: Japan's Transport and E-Commerce Partnership on the Fast Track

The Japanese transportation industry is leading the country’s long-standing efforts to go cashless. Earlier this month, two major players from the archipelago’s e-commerce and transport industries partnered up to simplify and promote payments that do not require hard cash.

Homegrown e-commerce giant Rakuten plans to incorporate its services into Japan’s premier railway firm,

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Taotao: Yahoo-Backed Exchange Enters Japan Market Amid Renewed Interest in Crypto

Japanese cryptocurrency exchange Taotao is expected to go live at noon on May 30, as per the company’s official Twitter page.

Notably, the new trading platform is heavily backed by Yahoo Japan, marking the local internet giant’s arrival into the field of crypto. The timing seems to be on point, now that the market has finally shaken off the bear.

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Japan to Check Money Laundering Policies of Crypto Exchanges Ahead of FATF Inspection

Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) is reportedly cracking down on crypto exchanges that offer anonymous transactions or have weak identity verification practices in preparation for inspection by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) this fall. Nikkei Asian Review reported the development on May 22.

The FATF will reportedly send its investigatory arm to review the strength of the Japanese FSA’s anti-money laundering (AML) policies,

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Japan’s Largest Railway Company Considers New Crypto Payment System for Transport Cards

Kazuhiro Tokita, representative director, board member and president at Japanese cryptocurrency exchange DeCurret, unveiled a new cryptocurrency payment system during a business presentation in Tokyo on March 27. Cointelegraph Japan reported on the presentation the same day.

The new system would enable the Suica payment card issued by the East Japan Railway Company (JR East),

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Huobi Secures Its FSA License in Japan, Other Large Players Are Pending

On Jan. 17, Singapore-based cryptocurrency exchange Huobi, one of the largest players on the market, relaunched as a fully licensed platform in Japan after merging with the BitTrade exchange.

Branching out to Japan, where compliance is valued and many regulatory measures are imposed for crypto players by domestic regulators, is a complex process.

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Huobi Resumes Trading in Japan as FSA-Licensed Exchange

Cryptocurrency exchange Huobi — currently the world’s 7th largest by daily traded volume — has relaunched as a fully licensed platform in Japan after merging with BitTrade. The news was announced in a press release published Jan. 17.

As reported, Huobi Global’s wholly owned subsidiary, Huobi Japan Holding Ltd, acquired a majority stake in BitTrade last September.

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Japan: Zaif Exchange Handover Complete as Previous Owner Vows to Dissolve Company

Tech Bureau, the company that formerly operated hacked Japanese cryptocurrency exchange Zaif, has completed its handover to buyer Fisco Cryptocurrency Exchange (FCCE), Cointelegraph Japan reported Nov. 22.

FCCE, which agreed to take over proceedings in October, will now assume responsibility for compensating users who lost money in the hack, which occurred Sept.

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Japan: Messaging Giant LINE Launches Trading of Its LINK Token on Native Exchange

Japanese messaging app provider LINE Corporation announced that its newly-developed LINK (LN) token is now tradeable on its native BITBOX cryptocurrency exchange in a press release Tuesday, October 16.

LINE, which launched BITBOX in July, will offer trading against three cryptocurrency assets – Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH) and Tether (USDT) – out of a total of thirty currently available on the exchange.

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Operator of Hacked Crypto Exchange Zaif Gets Third Warning From Japan's Watchdog

Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) has issued a third business improvement order to the owner of hacked crypto exchange Zaif, Tech Bureau. The news was reported by Cointelegraph Japan today, September 25.

As previously reported, as a result of a security breach on the Zaif exchange September 14, hackers succeeded in stealing 6.7 billion yen ($59.7 million) worth of crypto assets belonging to both users and to the exchange itself.

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