Cryptocurrency News From Japan: Feb. 9 – Feb. 15 in Review

This past week in Japan, native exchange Bitpoint released data showing a massive deficit from 2019, Japan’s Financial Services Agency mentioned upcoming tightened regulations, Japanese and European central banks researched distributed ledger technology, Japan’s Liberal Democratic Party chairman expressed fears of Libra and the Chinese digital yuan, and the GMO Coin exchange hit 300,000 users.

Check out some of this week’s crypto and blockchain headlines, originally reported by Cointelegraph Japan.

Japanese exchange operates in deficit for most of 2019

Japan-based exchange Bitpoint recently publicized its monetary records for Q2, Q3 and Q4 2019, revealing a 62.9% decline in sales. The entity ran the business amid a deficit of almost $6 million, more than 10 times higher than its 2018 deficit.

In July 2019, Cointelegraph reported that thieves stole approximately $32 million worth of crypto assets from the exchange.

The exchange reopened operations in August 2019, although the platform reportedly suffered decreased usage. Associated energy business Remix Point garnered significant capital in a recent equity delivery, and plans to help out Bitpoint.

Japan’s Financial Services Agency provides a statement on crypto

Prior to the enactment of alterations to the Funds Settlement Act and the Financial Instruments and Exchange Act regarding digital assets in the first half of 2020, Japan’s Financial Services Agency, or FSA, has pointed out several particulars.

Such details pertain to security token transaction exemptions, the requirement of trusts, and specifications on digital asset custody.

Regulation is also expected to stiffen around derivatives involvement, including stifling limits on margin trading amounts.

Cointelegraph Japan, Coin Tokyo, CoinChoice and CoinPost noted such regulations will hamper development in the cryptocurrency space.

Japan’s central bank and Europe’s central bank research distributed ledger tech

The Bank of Japan, or BOJ, and the European Central Bank, or ECB, came together in a research effort regarding distributed ledger technology, or DLT. A portion of the fourth stage of an effort called Project Stellar, the endeavor aims to dive into DLT and its privacy capabilities.

The BOJ produced a report on the pair’s findings. The pair investigated Privacy Enhancement Technology, or PET. The tech essentially blocks third parties from viewing activity.

Central Bank Digital Currency, or CBDC, interest also rose as a result of DLT and privacy difficulties.

Liberal Democratic Party leader proposes digital yen

Kozo Yamamoto, Japan’s Liberal Democratic Party Chairman, penned a plan to release a digital yen. Yamamoto wants Japan’s government to add the currency to its “bone policy.”

The Liberal Democratic Party head noted a two to three-year time horizon for the asset, allowing time for authorities to put appropriate laws in place.

Yamamoto mentioned Facebook’s Libra and China’s digital yuan, fearing a loss of government currency control.

“If you don’t issue a digital yen, you won’t be able to compete with the giant platformers in the future, where information will hold everything,” the chairman told Reuters.

GMO Coin tallies 300,000 users

Crypto exchange platform GMO Coin recently hit 300,000 users accounts as of January’s end. In December 2019, the platform touted 299,000 users.

GMO attributes its climbing user numbers to various enhancements, including criminal prevention efforts and asset additions.

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