The Japan Blockchain Alliance (JBA) has published guidelines for ordinary citizens to invest in initial coin offerings (ICOs). The awareness of rules and regulations surrounding ICOs in Japan is pretty limited. Most of the citizens are of the opinion that there are no rules and regulations at all. The truth is that there is a proper legal framework in Japan. This has been highlighted by the JBA which has published the guidelines as well.
With the astronomical rise in cryptocurrencies, the number of ICOs has been increasing day by day. This is also grabbing headlines in mainstream media as well. Ordinary citizens are also contemplating buying into these ICOs in order to get handsome returns. However, most of the ordinary citizens do not know about the risks which are involved in investing in these ICOs.
Even though the rules and regulations strictly pertaining to cryptocurrencies are not present in Japan but rules and regulations governing securities and other asset sales, and the sale of tokens in Japan are strict. That is why, according to the guidelines, there are quite a few rules and regulations which individuals have to follow. Also, the company which is issuing the tokens to the individuals needs to follow the legal framework as well in order to avoid any kind of criminal penalty.
According to the JBA, Japanese citizens are not allowed to transact in ICOs on the website. According to the Alliance, ICOs are considered as a virtual currency. That is why only virtual currency exchange business operators are authorized to deal in ICOs. This greatly reduces the capabilities of the companies issuing the ICOs, it reduces the capability of the company launching the ICOs to provide tokens to Japanese residents. Also, if anyone is soliciting such investments, they can attract imprisonment of 5 years and they can also attract a fine of ¥ 5 million. In addition to that, this is a criminal offense. Thus, the rules and regulations governing ICOs have entirely changed after this release by the JBA.
It remains to be seen how far the authorities go in order to implement these guidelines. For now, however, most of the citizens in Japan would be actually staying away from cryptocurrencies in order to avoid the criminal charges as well as penalties.