How to Buy Cryptocurrency in Japan
Japan has been one of the few countries in the world that has been pro-crypto since day one. The country pronounced Bitcoin as a legal form of payment back in 2016, but until 2017 the country did not have regulations for the market and industry.
Even before Bitcoin became a legal tender in Japan, there were many exchanges that had their headquarters in Japan. Probably the most famous and subsequently infamous among them was Mt. Gox. it is believed that a major driving force behind Japanese regulation for the cryptocurrency market comes from the Mt. Gox theft in which around 850,000 Bitcoins were stolen and the exchange eventually filed for insolvency in 2014.
The country for the longest time was known as the crypto-haven. Because it was easy to set up shop there. But since the regulations have come into play and Bitcoin has officially been brought under the Payment Services Act, the Japanese cryptocurrency market is one of the most stringently regulated parts of the market. Another interesting thing is Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous that Bitcoin was released under, is a very common Japanese name.
The Japanese Way
Japan has legalised and regulated the use of cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin and some altcoins come under the Payment Services Act of Japan and are accepted as legal tender in exchange for service and goods.
Japan has a large number of exchanges, P2P platforms and OTC facilities that people can use to buy Bitcoins, altcoins and other project utility tokens. The only part of the cryptocurrency market and the blockchain industry that the Japanese government hasn’t regulated yet is the ICO space. That too, since March 2018 has been under consideration.
Here is a list of the Top 4 exchanges from Japan.
Coincheck is probably Japan’s most used exchange. Users on the exchange can buy Bitcoins using credit and debit cards and also pay using bank transfers. The exchange does not have a fixed transaction fee. The transaction fee is decided based on the market and the number of bitcoin a user is buying.
Another interesting feature of the Coincheck is that if the user is a Japanese citizen, they do not need to do verification for transactions under $500 USD.
Bitflyer is Japans largest Bitcoin brokerage and exchange. Apart from having the highest trade traffic volume, the exchange also has the largest investment capital. The exchange is slightly harder to use and understand, but what it lacks in user interface it makes up for in low transaction costs.
Fisco Virtual Currency
Another interesting exchange that is run in Japan is Fisco Virtual Currency. The exchange is exclusively Japanese. In order to transact on their web platforms it is mandatory for the user to hold a Japanese citizenship or visa.
The exchange has very, very low transaction fees and only charges withdrawal fees from its users. The only drawback of this exchange is that it only deals with three cryptocurrencies; Bitcoin, Manacoin and Bitcoin Cash.
SBI Virtual Currencies
SBI Virtual Currencies is a cryptocurrency trading desk that is going to be launched and run by the Japanese financial giant SBI Holdings. After the launch, for a short while the trading desk is supposed to only sell and trade Bitcoins. But it is said that after the launch is over and the trading desk picks up, they will start dealing in Ethereum, Ripple and Bitcoin Cash too.
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