A total of nine cryptocurrency exchanges in Japan have suspended their operations so far. This includes the latest two, one of which was sanctioned by the Japanese financial regulator on Wednesday while the other voluntarily withdrew its license application.
Blue Dream Japan
The Japanese Financial Services Agency (FSA) issued a business improvement and suspension order to Blue Dream Japan Co. Ltd on Wednesday after an on-site inspection was carried out. The company must halt all activities related to its crypto exchange business from April 11 to June 10.
Following the FSA’s order, Blue Dream Japan issued a statement, “We will solemnly accept the business suspension order and business improvement order,” adding that they “promise to seriously respond, [and] we will do our utmost to resume our service.” Furthermore, the company wrote:
“We hope to continue [our] virtual currency exchange business in the future after conducting thorough compliance with laws and regulations and improving the management system so that we can provide services that users can use with confidence.”
Another company has also announced the withdrawal of its application with the FSA to operate a crypto exchange. Campfire, a leading crowdfunding site in Japan, operates the cryptocurrency exchange Firex, which was launched in March of last year.
9 Exchanges Suspended Operations So Far
Prior to the hack of one of the country’s largest crypto exchanges, Coincheck, Japan had 16 licensed crypto exchanges and 16 “quasi-operators” of cryptocurrencies, also called “deemed dealers.” These are companies that have applied for licenses but have not been approved. Both Blue Dream Japan and Campfire fall into this category.
Coincheck was the first company to be sanctioned by the FSA since the Japanese Payment Services Act went into effect in April of last year. Following a business improvement order on January 29, the agency launched an on-site inspection of the exchange and subsequently proceeded to inspect all other exchanges as well. All quasi-operators received on-site inspections.
On March 8, the FSA issued business improvement orders to six companies. Four of them were quasi-operators – Mister Exchange, Bitcrements, Bit Station, and FSHO. The other two were fully licensed – Tech Bureau and GMO Coin.
Then on April 6, the agency issued administrative punishment orders to three exchanges – Lastroots, Eternal Links, and another to FSHO. The latter two were also ordered to suspend operations – Eternal Links from April 6 to June 5 and FSHO from April 8 to June 7. The latest company to receive a business suspension order is the aforementioned Blue Dream Japan.
In addition, a total of six crypto exchanges are reportedly withdrawing their applications following the inspections by the FSA – Tokyo Gateway, Mr. Exchange, Raimu, Bitexpress, Bit Station, and now Campfire.