Will the pandemic usher in the long-awaited digital financial landscape in Japan?
Cryptocurrency is quickly becoming a viable option for regulators around the world as they look for a way to bridge lapses in data reporting, as well as recommend possible solutions for international trade.
Senator Otokita Shun, who is a member of Tokyo Nippon Ishin’s Committee of Financial Affairs, revealed in a tweet that he thought cryptocurrencies could become more important in the aftermath of the coronavirus.
— 音喜多 駿【YES！都構想】（参議院議員 / 東京都選出） (@otokita) May 23, 2020
In a quick discussion with cryptocurrency traders based in Japan, he noted that while there will be obstacles in its implementation (particularly in the finance and tax areas), they are not necessarily deal-breakers and these can be worked upon.
“At night, there is a zoom meeting. In the world of after-corona, not only digital currencies but here, the importance of cryptocurrencies and blockchain will increase. The Diet will also call for positive improvements in taxation and regulations that will hinder innovation.” the automated English translation of Senator Shun’s post reads.
In a Finextra blog post, the Chief Economist of De Meijer Independent Financial Services Advisory (MIFSA) Carlo De Meijer theorized that Chinese organisations are leveraging blockchain technology, not just for the benefits associated with going digital, but also to reduce the economic impact of the coronavirus on the country.
“They have rolled out a number of applications for immediate and emergency use to fight the spread of the coronavirus in public institutions, hospitals, universities, and the financial sector,” explained De Meijer.
The value of cryptocurrencies and their underlying technologies cannot be overstated in the COVID era. Distributed computer systems are capable of providing increased transparency, as well as share records of patient data, history and information of infection on a worldwide scale. In fact, countries such as the UAE are already working on corona-tracking applications for patients and citizens through frameworks that are based on blockchain.
Having a public blockchain can help immensely with sharing reliable data. This helps governments answer the problem of having under-reported cases, which can quickly become a worldwide spread.
Even in countries where the government is reluctant to welcome the adoption of cryptocurrencies, such as Myanmar and Lebanon, people are showing an increased interest in using crypto to remit and store their funds. These instances show increased promise for cryptocurrencies and their impact in developing nations.
Traditional investors, such as Paul Tudor Jones II, are also giving cryptocurrencies a chance, acknowledging Bitcoin to be the “fastest horse” in a time when governments are struggling to pump out fiat currency to keep their economies afloat.