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Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi, Japan’s largest bank, will issue its own digital currency – MUFG coin. According to the report of the Japanese daily The Asahi Shimbun, the digital currency will be available in the autumn of 2017.
The MUFG coin will be part of the bank’s fintech financial services. According to Tokyo-Mitsubishi’s plans, users will be able to withdraw money from their bank accounts into a wallet app in their smartphones. The exchange rate will be JPY1 for 1 MUFG coin. Users will also be able to transfer MUFG coins to other users and exchange the digital currency for “regular” foreign currencies at, for example, airports. The bank promises the commissions and fees will be lower.
According to the newspaper report, Tokyo-Mitsubishi bank is also planning the introduction of ATMs for MUFG coins where users can make transfers into their electronic wallets and exchange the digital currency into “regular” cash. This service would most likely be available in the spring of 2018. The bank is also planning to sign contracts with various stores to accept MUFG coins as payment.
The underlying technology for recording MUFG transactions will be the blockchain distributed ledger, used for recording transactions with bitcoins, as it is reliable and can bring down the operating costs.
Japan is among the leaders in adopting crypto- and digital currencies. Recently the country’s parliament passed amendments requiring regulation of the virtual currency exchanges. It also defines such currencies as “asset-like values” that can be used in making payments and can be transferred digitally.
The amendments are logical, considering the fact that some Japanese online stores, such as DMM.com have started accepting payments in bitcoins, while the country’s largest cryptocurrency exchange – bitFlyer opened its own online shop, also accepting payments in bitcoins.