Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG), Japan’s largest bank and financial institution by asset and the world’s fourth largest, plans to launch its own digital currency dubbed “MUFG Coin” as early as 2019. NHK Reports May 15.
The news outlet elaborated that, the bank plans to conduct a test phase of the MUFG Coin. The test phase will involve roughly 100,000 Account holders
MUFG isn’t the first banking institution to create its own digital currency, but it’s undoubtedly one of the biggest and first Japanese banks to reveal plans to build their own digital coin. The move is part of a trend by banks and financial institution to make inroads into the cryptocurrency sphere. As Cointelegraph reported In January 2018, the bank had revealed plans to develop a cryptocurrency as far back as 2016.
According to NHK News outlet, During the test phase, customers will be required to install an application on their smartphones that convert their deposits into the cryptocurrency. One MUFG Coin will be worth 1 yen.
MUFG Coin users will be able to use the digital coin to make payments at places like restaurants, convenience stores, and other shops. They can also remit the currency to the accounts of other Customers. NHK wrote, adding that:
“The bank officials will check to see if the settlements are carried out smoothly and in a secure way. For the future, they’re considering tie-ups with a wide range of businesses to offer services based on the currency.”
MUFG’s move to launch its own cryptocurrency is an expected development of the Japanese government’s push to introduce digital currencies, which were legalized in 2017, into mainstream society.
In recent times, Japan has been one of the most crypto-friendly nations in the world. As it stands now, Japan is currently the world’s leading Bitcoin market, making up a whopping 61 percent of all worldwide trades. For reference, that’s twice as large as the United States market. MUFG hopes to give this rapidly burgeoning market a fresh option for buying and selling.