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Ripple is planning a Japan move due to poor U.S. regulations. Other considered locations include the UK, UAE, Singapore, and Switzerland.
Blockchain payment services company Ripple Labs Inc may relocate to Japan from the U.S. due to a lack of regulatory clarity. Apart from Japan, the company has also shortlisted some other countries for relocation. Notably, Japan is the most likely country that Ripple may move to if the blockchain firm leaves the U.S.
Ripple Eyes Japan as Potential Destination
According to a Bloomberg report, the relocation plan was revealed by Ripple CEO Brad Garlinghouse. The CEO also mentioned three other potential destinations for the blockchain firm. The other likely destinations include Switzerland, the United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom.
The CEO explained the reason for choosing the shortlisted countries:
“The common denominator between all of them is that their governments have created a clarity about how they would regulate different digital assets, different cryptocurrencies.”
Garlinghouse also referred to the lack of regulatory clarity on cryptocurrencies in the U.S. He said that the U.S. government is yet to decide whether digital assets are commodities, currencies, properties, or securities.
Over time, Ripple has been in a legal battle with investors. The investors claimed that Ripple illegally issued XRP as a security.
Speaking further in another interview with Bloomberg Television, Garlinghouse expressed his desire for Ripple to remain in the US but with regulatory clarity. As noted by the CEO, regulatory clarity in the US will encourage the blockchain firm to invest and grow its business in the country.
Ripple’s Destination Preference
In addition, Garlinghouse revealed the reason behind shortlisting Japan as the most likely country for relocation. He said that the country has created “an environment for a very healthy market to develop.”
In 2017, Japan acknowledged cryptocurrency, with the country introducing a registration system for digital assets. At that time, 11 cryptocurrency exchanges initially registered and got approval from the Financial Services Agency (FSA).
Furthermore, Ripple also has a relationship with the Japanese company SBI Holdings. Reinforcing the consideration to move Ripple to Japan, Garlinghouse added:
“Japan is one of our fastest-growing markets, in part because we have key partners like SBI. I have spoken to the SBI team about the fact we are looking at.”
— BITMAX (@BITMAX_JP) June 12, 2020
On the 23rd of October, CNBC reported that Ripple is also eyeing London as a new location for its blockchain firm. Unlike the U.S., the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) considers XRP a currency and not a security. With the FCA clarifying that XRP is not a security, Garlinghouse said it would be “advantageous to Ripple.” He said the FCA’s declaration means RIpple is safe to operate in the UK.
Before now, Ripple executive chairman Chris Larsen had said that the firm may move its headquarters outside the U.S. Larsen revealed the relocation to Fortune in a virtual interview. At that time, the chairman mentioned Singapore and the UK as new possible destinations for Ripple.