Japan, an early adopter of cryptocurrency, is gearing up to ask its counterparts in the G20 to pick up their efforts to stop digital tokens from being used as a tool to launder money.
According to a report in CNBC citing a government official with direct knowledge of the matter, central bankers and finance ministers from the G20, which is the group of twenty major economies around the world, are scheduled to meet on March 19 and March 20 in Buenos Aires. Cryptocurrencies, reported CNBC, is expected to be a topic of the two-day meeting. “Discussions will focus on anti-money laundering steps and consumer protection, rather than how cryptocurrency trading could affect the banking system,” one of the officials told CNBC. “The general feeling among the G20 members is that applying too stringent regulations won't be good.” CNBC noted that the likelihood that the finance leaders from the G20 will come up with global rules for governing cryptocurrencies is slim, largely because each country has taken a different approach to regulating the market. That view, noted CNBC, was the same from another official that is involved in the upcoming G20 meeting. The report noted that the Financial Action Task Force, a 37-nation group, plans to use the meeting of the G20 to share findings on how to prevent cryptocurrencies from being used to launder money.
The policymakers in Japan are worried that some countries have less stringent rules when it comes to preventing money laundering via digital tokens than other nations. This comes while there is a consensus among the countries in the G20 that something needs to be done. France and Germany plan to make joint proposals on how the cryptocurrency market can be regulated, noted CNBC. One short-term strategy offered by the European Union is to apply anti-money laundering and terrorist financing rules to cryptocurrency. They can also continue to warn consumers about the risks associated with trading cryptocurrencies. This push comes at a time when Japan has been cracking down on the industry after Coincheck, a cryptocurrency exchange, was robbed — with the bad guys making off with $530 million.