March 28, 2020
By Priyanka Shetty
Japan will revise its foreign exchange regulation to stop Russia from evading Western monetary sanctions via cryptocurrencies, high-ranking officials said on Monday.
Here’s what we know so far:
- The authorities will submit a revision of the Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade Act to the current parliament session to reinforce protection in opposition to potential sanctions-busting by Russia through digital assets, Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno said in a press conference.
- Prime Minister Fumio Kishida also called for the law to be redrafted in a Monday parliament session, where he emphasised on the need for synchronised moves with Western allies after attending last week’s Group of Seven summit in Belgium.
- The revision “presumably enables the government to apply the law to crypto-asset exchanges like banks and oblige them to scrutinise whether their clients are Russian sanction targets,” said Saisuke Sakai, senior economist at Mizuho Research and Technologies.
- On March 7, Japan decided to expand its sanctions on wealthy Russian and Belarusian oligarchs and officials in the Putin administration. So far the Japanese government has already slapped asset-freeze sanctions on more than 100 Russian officials, oligarchs, banks and other institutions.
- Japan is also banning exports of Russia-bound oil refinery equipment and Belarus-bound general-purpose items that could be used by its military, the ministry said.
About the author
Based in Bengaluru, Priyanka Shetty is a freelance writer for Blockchain Asset Review