Japan: Smart Contracts Definition and Legality

There is no governmental definition for the terms ‘blockchain’ and ‘smart contract’. While the Japan Blockchain Alliance provides a working definition in Japanese for ‘blockchain,’ ‘smart contract’ is yet to be defined, and definitions are also absent from the main text and legal summary and analysis of the Virtual Currency Act that we were able to obtain. This is likely because there is not yet consensus on a common-sense or legal definition for ‘smart contract’ in Japan.

Despite the legal ambiguity, a memo by Jincor, a regulatory compliant platform created to allow any business to work with smart contracts and VC payments, would suggest that smart contracts are available to use or are already in use in a wide range of industries in Japan (see here).

It should be noted that https://smartcontract.jp/ is a private company with no relation to the legal status of smart contracts in Japan.

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