Japan FSA Commissioner: Need to “Consider Carefully” to Make It Easier to Invest in Crypto

Japan’s Financial Services Agency Commissioner Junichi Nakajima is open-minded about the potential benefits of crypto assets but said they are currently being used primarily for speculation and investment and not as a means of transferring money. Nakajima said in an interview,

“We need to consider carefully whether it is necessary to make it easier for the general public to invest in crypto assets.”

Nakajima, 58, who became the chief of Japan’s financial regulator last month, said new challenges come from decentralized finance (DeFi). Just last month, Japan's FSA set up a study group of outside experts and is expected to consider regulatory responses to DeFi in the coming months.

Japan continues to be heavily redistricted after the hack of Tokyo-based crypto exchange Coincheck in 2018, which led to the tightening of regulations. In 2017, Nakajima was involved in drafting Japan’s first regulatory framework for crypto assets that included the registration requirement for exchanges.

While the current regulatory framework on exchanges has been effective in anti-money laundering and customer protection, many of the 31 registered platforms are struggling financially, said Nakajima, who is an engineering major from the University of Tokyo.

Nakajima further said that, unlike stocks, crypto-assets do not have underlying assets, as such, subject to big price swings.

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