The government of the Japanese city of Hirosaki is accepting bitcoin donations in its effort to preserve and maintain a popular cherry tree park.
In a first, a local government in Japan and a bitcoin company are cooperating to accept bitcoin donations from Japan and beyond to help preserve a popular cherry blossom viewing park. Preservation and maintenance costs at the historic park run up to hundreds of thousands of dollars a year, according to Japan’s public broadcaster NHK.
The effort will be facilitated by Tokyo-based bitcoin wallet and exchange provider Coincheck.
Donations will help preserve 2600 cherry trees of 50 different varieties and the 400 years-old Hirosaki castle at the park, by repairing its stone walls.
A pathway at the Hirosaki castle park.
Japan’s national public broadcaster also adds that officials chose bitcoin as a method of payment due to low remittance costs that will encourage overseas donations. The report further cites Hirosaki deputy mayor Noboru Yamamoto stating that bitcoin may also prove a solution for other local authorities in Japan at a time when most are struggling to raise funds.
Coincheck quotes an unnamed Hirosaki government official who stated:
Blockchain technology behind bitcoin sounds interesting. Last year, I saw several news articles such as “stores that install bitcoin payment (Coincheck Payment) reached over 260,000”, “Virtual Currency Law comes into effect from April in 2017” and “No tax imposed when buying bitcoin.” Reading them, I thought bitcoin was becoming more useful in society.
The city official is referring to a number of positive developments for the local bitcoin sector in Japan. At the beginning of the month, bitcoin gained recognition as a legal method of payment. Last year, Japanese lawmakers formally took the decision to end an 8% consumption sales tax on bitcoin buying.
Following bitcoin’s acceptance, Japanese retailing giants have partnered bitcoin companies to enable payments with the cryptocurrency. The above developments could see bitcoin integrated among digital payment options that could ultimately see over quarter-of-a-million Japanese storefronts accepting bitcoin this year.
“At Hirosaki-city, we consider bitcoin donation as a great opportunity to attract tourists from overseas,” the official added.
At the time of publishing, at total 0.5886 BTC (approx. $739.69) has been raised from 49 contributors in a day since the city began accepting bitcoin donations. A relatively small amount, but undoubtedly a novel method to raise donations and awareness about a historic park beyond Japan’s borders.
Bitcoin donations toward the preservation of the park can be made here.
Featured images of Hirosaki Park from Shutterstock.
Report: Japanese Crypto Exchanges Unite to Form Self-Regulatory Group
A group of Japanese cryptocurrency exchanges is reportedly uniting to form a new self-regulatory body in the wake of the recent Coincheck hack.
According to Reuters, which cites unnamed sources clo
Bitcoin’s bouncing back, here are the next big catalysts for the cryptocurrency
Bitcoin is back. The cryptocurrency surged Tuesday, closing in on the $12,000 level. One bitcoin bull says progress on the regulatory front could send it even higher. According to CNBC "Fast
EU Regulators to Discuss Crypto Regulation Next Week
A group of European Union regulators will meet next week to discuss the regulation of cryptocurrencies.
Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, European Commission vice president Valdis Dombrovskis said
Lisk Relaunches Blockchain Project With 'Accessibility' in Mind
The team behind the Lisk blockchain network is hosting a relaunch event in Berlin today, boasting a new look and long-term plan for the project.
"Rebranding normally only involves a change of desig
Finland Mandates Cold Storage, Public Auctions for Seized Bitcoins
Finland's government released new guidelines today that set out how law enforcement officials must handle cryptocurrencies they confiscate.
The official agencies in charge of storing the cryptocurr
500 Startups, Huobi Labs Team Up to Incubate Blockchain Projects
500 Startups, the Silicon Valley startup accelerator, announced today that it is partnering with cryptocurrency exchange Huobi's incubator wing, Huobi Lab.
The two companies will support startups i
Bitcoin Price Ticks Higher Amid Strong Korean Demand
Bitcoin's recovery continues apace, with prices passing $11,600 in the morning's trading.
According to CoinDesk's Bitcoin Price Index, at around 07:00 UTC today, the cryptocurrency reached $11,
Final 4,200,000 Bitcoins To Be Mined, The Big Game Of Mining Chip Algorithm
Miners used to mine bitcoins via CPU of PC at the birth of bitcoin. Simply downloading a software, “puzzles” then could be solved automatically and bitcoins’ awarded. However, the price of bitco