Japanese officials announced Friday that the nation’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) has granted regulatory approval to eleven of Japan’s digital currency exchanges. Those exchanges were required to register with the FSA to comply with new legislation passed earlier this year. That legislation recognized digital currency as a legal payment option, and established new regulatory guidelines for exchange operators.
The FSA approvals suggest that the country’s exchanges have been making progress in their efforts to comply with the new rules. Those rules mandate that all Japanese exchanges maintain capital reserves of at least 10 million yen, and provide certain protections for client funds. The agency has been inspecting those exchanges for the last five months to verify compliance.
According to the Nikkei Asian Review, the initial regulatory approvals include major Japanese exchanges like bitFlyer, and new market participants like SBI Virtual Currencies. The FSA is also reportedly continuing inspections of seventeen other firms, and could grant them similar approval in the coming months. In the last five months, twelve Japanese exchanges have shut down due to an inability to comply with those rules.
Meanwhile, South Korea’s Financial Services Commission (FSC) followed China’s lead by banning initial coin offerings (ICOs). The government also threatened ‘stern penalties’ for violators of the ban. A Yonhap report confirms that South Korea’s authorities made the decision at an FSC-led meeting of ‘senior officials from relevant ministries.”