Tim Hakki

Last updated: February 28, 2024 12:38 EST | 1 min read

Japan is a global crypto payments leader

Japan is a global leader in compliant crypto payment services, according to a report published today by independent finance news outlet FinanceFeeds.

The conclusion comes off the back of an announcement by Japanese Web3 payments app Slash that it has facilitated a total of more than $10,000,000 in transactions between 3,000 merchants.

Slash is a compliant payments app because it addresses Japan’s stringent requirements for crypto service providers. The app only permits crypto-to-crypto swaps, not crypto-to-fiat, so people do most of their buying with stablecoins.

In this way, Slash gets around a prohibitive taxation policy of 55% on “miscellaneous income”, the current legal category used to regulate cryptocurrencies in Japan.

The company has ambitious plans in the near-term too. Later this year, it will launch a credit card linked to app users’ digital wallets that will further facilitate large-scale compliant adoption of crypto throughout the country.

Many of the country’s top retailers accept Bitcoin as tender, including the department store chain Marui, leading electronics retailer Yamada Denki, and e-commerce giant Mercari, which accepts Bitcoin on its flea market app.

Japan Embraces Crypto


Japanese lawmakers have overall welcomed cryptocurrencies as an important part of fintech development. Both the central bank and the Financial Services Agency have given clear guidance to businesses using blockchain elements like stablecoins and DAOs.

The country has heavily regulated stablecoins. Only banks, trust companies and money transmission services can issue them and all reserves underpinning the value of the stoken have to be held in Japanese trust and invested only in domestic bank accounts.

Earlier this month, authorities for the city of Kochi signed a deal to virtualize the city on the Japanese Start Land metaverse application. It hopes to receive its first online tourists later this summer.

An official release from the Ministry of Economy in the middle of the month hinted that there may be an upcoming rule change in the country that will let VC firms hold crypto, a crucial part of investing in the industry.

And in the last week Japanese financial mega firms Mitsubishi UFJ, Rakuten, and Mizuho announced they’re launching a tokenized bond, a form of loan from investors that will pay out interest in crypto.

Yesterday, USDC issuer Circle announced it has partnered with domestic exchange Coincheck to secure the stablecoin’s first listing in Japan.

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