Digital currencies are of keen interest to many financial institutions. Contrary to earlier reports, Japan’s MUFG is not planning to issue its own digital currency in the near future.
There appears to be some confusion as to what MUFG is planning exactly. So far, it doesn’t appear as if launching a digital currency is on the agenda at this time.
No Digital Currency Plans for MUFG
Earlier reports by Japanese media hinted at how MUFG would explore a digital currency option.
This would put the institution on the same level as those in other countries exploring similar ventures.
Rather than creating a digital currency, NUFG is looking to launch a smartphone-based cashless payment solution. That venture is undertaken with the help of Recruit.
Current plans call for utilizing Recruit’s client base – consisting of hotels, beauty salons, and eateries – to sign up as many participating stores as possible.
Cashless payments have struggled to gain any sort of traction in Japan, but not for a lack of competition.
As these locations have large customer bases, a lot of viable information regarding this mobile cashless payment solution can be gathered in the process.
An official spokesperson explains:
“Certain media outlets today published reports regarding establishment of a joint venture between MUFG Bank, Ltd., a consolidated subsidiary of MUFG, and Recruit Co., Ltd.. These reports are not based on any announcement made by MUFG. It is true that they have concluded the joint venture agreement for an establishment of a new company. No other decision has been made in this regard at this time.”
This does not mean the plans associated with their native digital currency are put on hold indefinitely.
Instead, it seems this new project will launch now, whereas the native currency is still in the experimental or research stage.