Japan’s first blockchain industry organization, the Blockchain Collaborative Consortium (BCCC), sees 34 companies as founding members coming together. BCCC will help promote blockchain solutions and innovation to the public as well as working with other blockchain organizations from around the world.
The likes of Microsoft Japan and Ethereum-coder collective ConsenSys together with an array of Japanese Fintech startups and technology companies have banded together to form the Blockchain Collaborative Consortium.
In a statement via a press release, the consortium highlighted blockchain technology as the innovation at the very core of the Fintech revolution. The BCCC sees distributed ledger technology as the instrumental core to enable the “evolution of information systems, in just about every industry.”
The group stated:
Prior to the formation of this consortium, knowledge and achievements related to blockchain in Japan weren’t shared, so the scope of applications was limited.
The Consortium adds that it will seek to fund blockchain research and promote the innovation to help Japan stay competitive in the global Fintech arena.
“We will coordinate with other blockchain organizations around the world,” the group added. “We will bring home what we learn from overseas, and as a leading country of blockchain technology, we will disseminate our expertise and experience globally.:
A Bitcoin-Friendly Fintech Destination
Following the infamous episode of the now-defunct bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox that was based in Japan, the country’s authorities and regulators have been making inroads into passing laws that will see cryptocurrencies like bitcoin treated like conventional fiat currencies.
A report from February revealed that the Financial Services Agency in Japan was considering legislative revisions that would fundamentally recognize bitcoin and other digital currencies as methods of payment and settlement like their conventional currency counterparts. The regulators saw fit to do so, with the revisions proposing that they see bitcoin as “fulfilling the functions of currency.”
The following month saw Japan debate its bitcoin tax, as the only one among seven major industrialized nations to tax the cryptocurrency. Tsukasa Akimoto, a member of the ruling political party in Japan asked the country’s Finance Minister Taro Aso, “Can’t’ you consider not imposing consumption tax on bitcoins in line with the international trend?”
In the days following the debate, another unconfirmed report claimed that the Japanese cabinet had passed the bill that officially recognized digital currencies like bitcoin, as real money.
Japan’s stance on bitcoin and other digital currencies, whilst embracing and encouraging blockchain applications and endeavors is in marked contrast to the one taken by Russian officials. While the Russian Central Bank has shown that it is friendly toward bitcoin’s underlying technology, the blockchain, plans to ban bitcoin via a bill to be passed through the Russian state Duma – the lower chamber of the Russian Parliament – is currently in motion.
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