Friendly Government, Poor Infrastructure: Bitcoin Has Peculiar Ways in Japan

By September 3, 2016Bitcoin Business

Despite the government’s friendly regulations towards both Bitcoin startups and services the Japanese Bitcoin infrastructure remains imperfect in comparison to other East Asian countries, including South Korea and Taiwan. In early 2015, Bitcoin investors and startups were confident that the Japanese Bitcoin industry would establish a solid infrastructure for digital currency users to cash in and out through low-cost and efficient applications. How is it in other Asian countries? Countries in Asia such as the Philippines, South Korea, and Taiwan have Bitcoin payment service providers, exchanges, and applications which enable simplified low-cost trading of Bitcoin. The Philippines for instance, has , which allows users to cash in and out through any of the region’s bank ATMs. South Korea has Coinplug which enables users to purchase and sell Bitcoin through tens of thousands of convenience stores. Taiwan’s Maicon and BitoEX offers a similar service to Coinplug, which allows users to buy and sell Bitcoin at 10,000 FamilyMart, OK mart, and Hi-Life stores. Japan, however, has a very limited range of services and products which can be used to purchase and sell Bitcoin. As of now, there are four major Bitcoin exchanges which operate in the country including Kraken, QuoinExchange, Coincheck, and bitFlyer. All of these Bitcoin exchanges support the local transfer of Japanese yen and bank deposits to process Bitcoin trade orders. The struggles of regular Bitcoin users in Japan Although professional traders or high profile investors can easily open an account, verify themselves, and begin trading on these exchanges, it is relatively difficult for regular Bitcoin users to purchase small amounts of Bitcoin quickly, with low-costs. Thus, it is almost impossible for users to purchase Bitcoin in the country without operating a bank account. Because of this, tourists like myself struggled to find ways to cash out in […]

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