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Japan FSA approves 11 firms as cryptocurrency exchange operators

Japan’s Financial Services Agency (FSA) has announced the names of 11 companies that have been approved as operators of cryptocurrency exchanges.

These companies include Zaif Exchange, QUOINE, bitFlyer, Bit Bank, Tech Bureau, and SBI Virtual Currencies, among others.

"As the first global crypto fintech company to be fully licensed with the JFSA, we will keep on working hand in hand with regulators and other stakeholders towards the healthy development of the cryptocurrency industry within Japan and on a global scale," said Mike Kayamori, CEO and Co-founder of QUOINE. "Protection of customers' assets is of the highest priority to us. With our JFSA license, this is a positive market signal that we are here to build a trusted exchange, with proper compliance measures in place to prevent security breaches and provide more asset protection for our customers."

“As the number of players in the virtual currency industry grows, so do cases of related fraud and abuse. bitFlyer looks forward to a market that ensures increased customer protection through asset segregation, and a registration program under the FSA that requires KYC and auditing,” bitFlyer said in a statement. “As a licensed financial institution, bitFlyer works hard to provide safe and secure services to its customers.”


The registration of cryptocurrency exchanges was implemented as of April 1, 2017, in accordance to a revision to the Payment Services Act. With this, only those exchanges that are registered with the FSA are permitted to conduct virtual currency exchange in Japan.

According to Reuters, the FSA is currently reviewing registration applications from 17 other exchange operators, while 12 companies have decided to close operations in the wake of new regulations.

FSA officials told Reuters that the new regulation is aimed at balancing the need to protect investors with the need to support fintech innovations.

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