Japan is not planning any kind of harsh crackdown on cryptocurrency exchanges, but rather wants the industry to grow, according to comments made to Reuters.
Speaking with the publication, the head of Japan’s financial regulator Financial Services Agency (FSA) Toshihide Endo said: “We have no intention to curb [the industry] excessively. We would like to see it grow under appropriate regulation.”
Just what ‘appropriate regulation’ means remains to be seen, but these comments echo those made previously in regards to crypto and blockchain in the country.
In general, most conversations having to do with both crypto and the traditional financial world come down to regulation. This week alone, news broke that the Winklevoss brothers (and their company, Gemini) would band together with exchanges to form the self-regulating Virtual Commodity Association.
Back in May, the Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group announced plans to trial its own digital currency, with the intention of trialing its MUFG Coin in areas of Japan come 2019.
Crypto appears to have been very lucrative for Japanese investors, with more that $331 million allegedly raised through mining by only 331 investors – $1 million each.
“If the rapid growth of the cryptocurrency sector in late 2017 is considered, 331 is a number that is simply too low to be true,” an analyst said. “A large portion of cryptocurrency investors probably did not declare their earnings to the government.”
Whatever the case may be, it is young male professionals who are most likely to enter the space – 14 per cent of Japanese businessmen aged 25-30 reported currently owning cryptocurrency.