Japanese exchanges have resumed bitcoin deposits and withdrawals after suspending them on July 23. These exchanges are members of the Japan Cryptocurrency Business Association (JCBA). Merchant services were also suspended, causing Japanese retailers to halt taking bitcoin payments during that time.
The July 23 Suspension Lifted
Thirteen Japanese bitcoin exchange, members of the Japan Cryptocurrency Business Association (JCBA), halted their bitcoin services on July 23, after BIP91 was locked in three days prior. All exchange members followed through with the suspension of bitcoin deposits and withdrawals as well as any payment services they offer.
On Monday, the JCBA issued a statement canceling the precautionary suspension. Stating that 24 hours have passed since the suspension began, the association wrote “so far concerns of the occurrence of a split that interferes with the operation of the blockchain was not recognized,” adding that:
As for the stop measures for accepting and withdrawing bitcoins, we decided to cancel the suspension based on the judgment of each member at this time, and already some members have resumed bitcoin deposits and withdrawals.
Some exchanges were planning to halt bitcoin service longer. Bitpoint, for example, suspended bitcoin services at 13:45 Japan time on July 23. The exchange originally planned to resume its bitcoin services at 16:00 on July 25, but will now resume on July 24 at 16:00.
Merchants Temporarily Halted Accepting Bitcoins
Along with their bitcoin merchant service providers, Japanese retailers and restaurants that accept bitcoin payments also stopped accepting the cryptocurrency during that time. NHK reported on the 23rd that along with bitcoin exchanges, “at restaurants and other places where payments can be made with bitcoins, the service cannot be used at this time.”
Among them is Numazuko Ginza sushi restaurant in Tokyo, which had to notify customers visiting the restaurant that the bitcoin payment option was not available after Coincheck suspended its merchant services, the publication detailed. Restaurant manager Ken Nagahama has seen a rise in customers wanting to pay with the digital currency over the past few months. He said “I think that this is a useless measure for improving Bitcoin, and I hope that stability will continue,” the news outlet quoted him saying.
August 1 Suspension Still On Schedule
The JCBA and its bitcoin exchange members will still suspend bitcoin services on August 1. They have also been preparing for how to deal with the new cryptocurrency, to be called “Bitcon Cash” which is expected to result from the planned hard fork on that date. The association reiterated in Monday’s announcement:
Since there is a possibility of a split by hard fork on August 1st, each member will take measures such as establishing a suspension period again in order to deal with it.
Do you think bitcoin exchanges and merchants should suspend bitcoin services on August 1? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock and News4europe
Need to calculate your bitcoin holdings? Check our tools section.