Japan’s financial regulator, the Financial Services Agency (FSA), has confirmed reports that as many as eight cryptocurrency exchanges have expressed their intention to leave the Japanese market.
The news follows from a meeting held by the regulator last week, which was also attended by representatives from the Ministry of Justice, the Bank of Japan, the Ministry of Finance and the Consumer Affairs Agency, amongst others.
Following changes in licensing for cryptocurrency exchanges in Japan, the FSA confirmed that a number of “deemed dealers” has announced their intention to end their applications for cryptocurrency exchange operations.
Of the eight, according to the FSA, one company now believes it no longer falls within the scope of the licensing requirements, with the remaining seven no longer interested in progressing with their applications.
“Eight deemed virtual currency exchange companies announce the intention to withdraw registration applications…One company confirms that it does not fall under the virtual currency exchange industry as a result of grasping the actual situation in detail,” according to the regulator.
The seven are Mr. Exchange, Campfire, Bit Station, BitExpress, Tokyo Gateway, Raimu, and Payward Japan. Debit completes the eight, as the company that now no longer requires a license from the regulator.
The development comes at a time of flux for cryptocurrency businesses in Japan, following government attempts to tighten up regulation there.
However, despite the increased hurdles to operating crypto exchanges in the country, the FSA revealed as many as 100 new entrants are poised to begin their own applications.
Amongst them is CyberAgent, one of Japan’s leading online TV and advertising platforms, which had flirted with plans for its own cryptocurrency in the past. Its move towards a cryptocurrency exchange comes through its subsidiary, CyberAgent Bitcoin.
However, noting the risks, especially following on from the hack of Coincheck, the firm’s CEO Susumu Fujita was quoted by Itmedia saying the path towards accreditation would be a slow one.
“There are risks that we should not undertake when compared with other projects. Entry is slow in the first place. The examination by the Financial Services Agency is becoming severe,” Fujita said.