Coinbase Joins Japan Virtual Currency Exchange Association; Looks To Move Into New Market


The San Francisco-based crypto exchange Coinbase is getting ready to enter the Japanese market and to obtain a license from local regulators.

Very popular in the US and other countries, Coinbase has applied before for a license to operate in Japan. It has now become a Japan Virtual Currency Exchange Association’s (JVCEA) second-class member. The JVCEA is a self-regulatory organization that was given in 2018 the approval by the Financial Services Agency (FSA) to oversee the crypto industry.

Coinbase Had a Japanese Exchange in Sight

The announcement was made by the JVCEA on Monday. It says that local companies Tokyo Hash and Digital Asset Markets Inc., also Coinbase, have become its second-class members. Ever since 2016, Coinbase has had in sight a Japanese exchange, after receiving a $10.5 million investment from a Mitsubishi UFJ Capital and Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ group. In 2018, it named its CEO for a Japanese subsidiary. Later in the same year, it said it’s confident it will receive before 2019 ends from the FSA the license to operate. However, the license came at the beginning of 2020.

Virtual Currency Exchange to Operate Under the Local Law

Now being an SRO member, Coinbase has become one of the second-class establishments “applying for or planning to apply for virtual currency exchange registration as prescribed in Article 63-3 of the Payment Services Act,” says the JVCEA. The association is making sure that its users are carrying out their transactions according to the Japanese law. Since it’s an SRO official, it can put in place the rules for the exchanges in the nation, not to mention that it has the power to take action when these rules are being violated.

For now, it tries to restore the confidence in the crypto industry, after a few hacks on important exchanges have happened, such as the Coincheck breach that caused in January 2019 the loss of $420 million. While there’s a Coinbase holding page for the exchange’s planned local services, the page of supported nations doesn’t include Japan yet.

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