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Statement by Minister for Financial Services: FSA

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On April 7, 2020, responding to the COVID-19 epidemic spreads, the Japanese government declared a state of emergency covering Saitama, Chiba, Tokyo, Kanagawa, Osaka, Hyogo and Fukuoka. On April 16, 2020 the Japanese government expanded the state of emergency effective for the selected prefectures to the entire nation.

(Request to financial institutions)
In accordance with the policies and requests of the central and prefectural governments, financial institutions in the areas designated in the state of emergency declaration are required to prevent the spread of infections.

Under these circumstances, financial institutions are requested to make appropriate efforts to secure necessary business continuity based on the basic philosophy in the attachment, from the viewpoint of maintaining financial functions that support economic activities and protecting customers.

In addition, the exchanges are also requested to take appropriate measures to continue necessary operations from the standpoint of maintaining market functions.

(Request to financial service users)
While emergency measures are taken, deposit-taking institutions continue financing and customer support services including deposits and savings, money orders, bills, remittances, loans, ATMs.

In addition, the financial system of Japan is stable, and the Japanese Financial Services Agency will cooperate with financial institutions, exchanges, the Bank of Japan, relevant ministries and agencies, and prefectures in an appropriate manner to prevent any serious hindrance to the function of the financial system and financial markets in any circumstances. I would like to ask you to take calm actions.

Also, in order to prevent the spread of infection, which is the purpose of government’s declaration of emergency situations and the requests from the prefectural governments, financial institutions refrain from any unnecessary or non-urgent face-to-face procedures.  It would be appreciated if you could use non-face-to-face financial services through utilizing online services, call centers, and ATMs as much as possible.

Since there are concerns about opportunistic fraud and illegal lending driven by COVID-19 epidemic, the government will work with relevant organizations to respond to these concerns. I would like to ask you to be careful about these fraud and illegal lendings.

Regulator Information

Abbreviation: FSA
Jurisdiction: Japan

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