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Japan’s two cryptocurrency associations have reportedly decided to merge

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On Thursday, Nikkei reported, “Two cryptocurrency industry groups in Japan have agreed to merge in an effort to accelerate the establishment of voluntary regulations and regain public trust in the aftermath of a massive virtual currency heist.”

Currently, Japan has two cryptocurrency industry associations. The first one is called the Japan Blockchain Association (JBA). It is headed by Bitflyer CEO, Yuzo Kano, and has a total of 88 members. The second association, the Japan Cryptocurrency Business Association (JCBA) has a total of 154 members, according to Minkabu publication.

Recently, Japan witnessed a massive hack of one of the country’s largest exchanges, Coincheck. 58 billion yen worth on the cryptocurrency NEM were stolen. This is one of the major reasons for the two organizations’ decision to merge. They “are hurried to restore trust in the industry,” Forbes Japan reported.

They “will be integrated to establish a new self-regulating organization,”. This body will focus on areas pertaining to safety management system and compensation of customer assets. In addition, the new entity will recheck the reliability of crypto exchanges. These have already been approved by the Japanese Financial Services Agency (FSA). As of now, there are 16 approved exchanges and 16 under review. This includes Coincheck.

Set to launch on April 1, “The new organization’s chairman will likely be JCBA Chairman Taizen Okuyama, president of Money Partners Group,” the news outlet detailed. They added that Kano is “expected to become the self-regulatory body’s vice chairman.”.  The JCBA issued a statement on Thursday Commenting on the news of its merger with the JBA. It stated that no details have been decided at this time.

However, the FSA previously “refused to allow two self-regulatory bodies, urging the industry to create a unified organization by merging the JBA and the JCBA,” Nikkei explained on Thursday. It also said that “Once the new body is approved by the agency, it will gain the power to set penalties for breaches of its self-imposed rules. This should also help address calls by banks and other businesses in the conventional financial industry for virtual currency businesses to establish a robust self-regulatory regime.”

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