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3 Japanese megabanks to test P2P money transfer service in January 2018

Three Japanese megabanks Mizuho Bank Ltd., Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp. and Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ Ltd. — will begin testing a new peer-to-peer money transfer service in January 2018 as part of efforts to offer low-cost online financial services, The Nikkei reported Oct. 16.

The system, which is based on blockchain technology, will enable customers to open virtual accounts tagged to their deposit accounts to send and receive money using their mobile phone numbers or email addresses 24 hours a day.

A special app for the mobile payment service will be accessible by customers using their fingerprints and pass codes. Japanese IT company Fujitsu will provide the blockchain-based digital platform.

Given the low development and maintenance costs of the blockchain technology-based system, the money transfer cost is expected to be less than 10% of other mobile payment services' current costs, the publication reported.

Mizuho Bank is a unit of Mizuho Financial Group Inc., Sumitomo Mitsui Banking is a unit of Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc. and Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ is a unit of Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc.