According to media reports, Japan’s Financial Services Agency, the country’s financial regulator, is weighing on abandoning the 8% sales tax which bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are currently subject to.
Japan is the only G7 nation to have such kind of a tax. In accordance with the legislation that had passed earlier this year, cryptocurrencies are to be treated similar to some other means of payment, like prepaid cards.
“Discussions between the Finance Ministry and Financial Services Agency are expected to lead to a formal decision after talks by a ruling-coalition tax panel at the end of the year,” the agency’s reports.
Bitcoin purchases in Japan are currently subject to an 8% sales tax.
The issue of bitcoin taxation was raised earlier this year by Tsukasa Akimoto, a member of Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party.
“Can’t you consider not imposing consumption tax on bitcoins in line with the international trend?” Akimoto asked the country’s finance minister Tarō Asō back then.
Reportedly, the minister replied that Japan was not the only country to do so.
Now, should the talks turn out successful, bitcoin and other digital currencies would be exempt from taxation thus seriously cutting administrative costs for local exchanges, and therefore, local cryptocurrency users.
Actually, the bitcoin taxation issue is not something new. Back in October 2015, the European Court of Justice ruled that exchanging virtual currencies should be exempt from value-added tax in the same way as traditional cash.