Japanese financial regulators propose treating bitcoin as currency

Regulation | February 24, 2016 By:

Japanese financial regulators have proposed the Financial Services Agency (FSA) to handle digital currencies like bitcoin as methods of payment equivalent to conventional currencies.

The FSA is considering whether to make revisions to legislation that would classify digital currencies as “fulfilling the functions of currency”.

The FSA believes the legal status of bitcoin will spur the growth, adoption and awareness of digital currencies across Japan, and contribute to the rapid development of the financial technology sector. The implementation of Bitcoin’s beneficial applications such as micropayments, peer to peer transactions and smart contract-based technologies could transform Japan’s financial technology sector.

Exchanges and other institutions dealing in digital currencies would have to register with the FSA, subjecting them to tighter oversight.