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Japan: More Regulations ahead for Crypto Exchanges

Tim Alper
Last updated: | 1 min read

Japan’s financial regulator, the Financial Services Agency (FSA), is set to make amendments to existing cryptocurrency-related laws.

Source: iStock/Nuthawut Somsuk

Numerous media outlets in the country have reported that the FSA is now mulling changes that will make it harder for investors to speculate on cryptocurrency markets.

Although the FSA is yet to let on exactly which of the country’s laws it will seek to change, it has previously asked the government to amend the Payment Services Act, a move that has required all new exchanges to obtain FSA-approved licenses.

The FSA has this year been intensifying its efforts to reduce anonymous trading, money laundering through exchanges and what it perceives to be lax security systems utilized by the country’s exchanges. Its policing has intensified in 2018, with many leading exchanges handed business improvement orders – and others being forced to suspend operations or even refused licenses.

Meanwhile, the country’s largest industry group of licensed exchanges, the Japan Virtual Currency Exchange Association (JVCEA) has lodged a formal application with the FSA to become a recognized and certified “fund settlement business association” in line with the country’s Act on Settlement of Funds.

The association expects the FSA to take up to two months to review its application, and has proposed an exhaustive range of regulations for its members, including bans on “anonymous” tokens, mandatory audits, tighter security and comprehensive anti-money laundering measures.

The JVCEA says that its members have agreed to implement these measures should the FSA grant the body official recognition.