Japan blockchain startup seeks to build Asian digital payment network


Japanese fintech developer Soramitsu has joined an effort to build a cross-border payment system for Asian countries involving Cambodia’s central bank digital currency, the core of a growing international network.

Soramitsu has supported the issuance of Asian CBDCs Bakong in Cambodia and Laos’ Digital Lao Kip. Bakong is already used for QR code-based digital payments between Cambodia and Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam. As of the end of 2022, it had 8.5 million users and handled around USD 15 billion in payments.

The company is working to enable similar cross-border payments for India, China and Laos, and hopes to bring Japan into this network.

Soramitsu first will establish a Japanese exchange for stablecoins, which are cryptocurrencies pegged to legal tender. If a consumer in Thailand wanted to make a QR code-based payment to buy something from a Japanese e-commerce site, for example, the payment would be sent to the exchange as a dollar-denominated Bakong and converted to a yen-denominated stablecoin.

Low transaction fees are one feature of this framework….

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