G20 Summit in June to discuss cryptocurrencies

Japan’s Sankei Shimbun reported on March 25 that cryptocurrencies are expected to be included on the agenda of the G20 Osaka Summit scheduled for June 2019. The Japanese government intends to take the lead in developing rules by concurrently pursuing regulatory tightening and technological innovations.

On March 15, the Japanese government took a Cabinet decision on the proposed revision to the Financial Instruments and Exchange Act and Payment Services Act in relation to cryptocurrencies. The proposed revision includes a change of term to “crypto asset,” because the term is customarily used at international conferences. This is said to be in consideration of the international G20 meeting scheduled for June.

The G20 Osaka Summit will be held over two days from June 28 (Friday) to 29 (Saturday) in 2019. In addition to 20 members of the group, including representatives from the United States, China, the European Union (EU), and the United Kingdom, international institutions, including the United Nations (UN), International Monetary Fund (IMF), and World Bank, will be represented at the summit.

At the previous G20 Summit held in Buenos Aires in November 2018, the goal was announced to develop international standards for money laundering and tax avoidance involving the use of cryptocurrencies by 2020. While cryptocurrencies have been included on the G20 agenda several times in the past, discussions are still ongoing and no clear conclusions have been reached.

Under these circumstances, the Japanese government seems to have been taking the action in preparation for the G20 Summit to be held in June, which Japan will chair.

Japan’s financial industry is scheduled to undergo the fourth round of mutual evaluations of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) this fall. Cryptocurrency exchanges have been listed as one of the priority targets within the scope of FATF evaluations. Increasing focus has been placed on international conferences, handling cryptocurrencies in accordance with FATF’s evaluation standards, and anti-money laundering measures. How discussions on cryptocurrencies develop at the June G20 Summit is attracting growing attention.

*This article was written by Fisco