Two years after the Mt. Gox scandal (the Tokyo-based bitcoin exchange, handling up to 70% of all bitcoin transactions, filed for bankruptcy after a large share of their bitcoin disappeared), the Japanese Diet has enacted a bill to regulate the exchange of virtual currencies. The revision of the law uses the definition of “asset-like values” for payment and digital transfer for virtual currencies. Exchange operators will be registered under the Financial Services Agency, which can conduct inspections and issue administrative orders.
The revised law will go into effect within a year and is part of a larger revision of the Japanese banking regulations. According to operators, it will enhance trust into virtual currencies and also encourage big Japanese banks, which are known to be rather conservative, to enter the market. This might push innovation in the fintech sector and be a great chance for startups in that field. (Pictures: japantimes.co.jp)