Japan Allows Crypto Industry to Self-Regulate as India Chases After Bitcoin ATMs
In what looks like a complete casting away of doubts, the Japanese government has now given the country’s crypto industry the free hand to operate and – at the same time – regulate itself. The unusual but pertinent move comes after the Financial Services Agency (FSA) seems to have realized its approach has not been effective in managing crypto activities in the Asian country. On the other side of the continent, Indian police are seeking to make as much arrests after seizing their country’s first Bitcoin ATM and arrested Unocoin co-founder Sathvik Viswanath days ago Oct. 23.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) banned banks from working with crypto-related companies in April. As a result, exchanges such as Unocoin and ZebPay were unable to transact their respective customers’ orders through regular banking channels. While ZebPay had to shut down last month, Unocoin sought to experiment with stablecoins and ATMs to continue receiving fiat deposits from its over a million customers. As India’s clamping down on crypto dealings is still in force, Times of India reports that 37-year-old Viswanath was arrested for running the teller machine without necessary approvals. Known for their tech prowess, the government’s hardline stance has been argued that could contribute to India’s brain drain situation with human capital flowing to countries like Japan.
Our Machine didn't go well with few mainstream media reports who projected it under a negative light. The machine is still under final testing mode and it will be up and running in the upcoming week. The machine has been temporarily moved from its original place of installation.
— Unocoin (@Unocoin) October 20, 2018
The Japanese government is reported to have reviewed its approach toward the crypto industry in the wake of two separate large-scale thefts. The review is now undoubtedly responsible for their granting the control of the industry to ‘experts’ instead of the government trying to impose set rules on them. According to Reuters, the Japan Virtual Currency Exchange Association will now police and sanction exchanges for any violations.
How the precedent to be set by this Japanese experiment would go is indeterminate. However, it is clear that it would go a long way to shape the face of crypto regulation in years to come – not only in Japan but all over the world. In the meantime, while the ongoing crypto clamping down in India continues, it will drive enthusiasts to peer-to-peer trading on globally-known platforms like LocalBitcoins, Bisq and Paxful.