China’s state planning body has proposed new rules that could lead to the eradication of all bitcoin mining within the country. The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) has said that it is seeking public opinion on a revised list of industries it wants to “encourage, restrict or eliminate”. Cryptocurrency mining is one of the sectors that could be eliminated instantly.
If this comes to pass, it would be the end of China’s dominance in the highly profitable industry. The public have until May 7 to comment on the draft.
The NDRC said that cryptocurrency mining, including Bitcoin mining, should be phased out because they do not adhere to the laws and regulations introduced in 2005 relating to safety, energy waste and environmental pollution.
State-owned newspaper Securities Times said that the draft list “distinctly reflects the attitude of the country’s industrial policy” towards the cryptocurrency industry.
Bitcoin Mining Will Become More Decentralised
Cryptocurrencies have been under close examination in China since 2017 when officials started to ban initial coin offerings and closed down local trading exchanges. They also limited mining which forced many companies to find a base elsewhere in the world.
“Chinese miners will have to give up their bases in Yunnan and Sichuan and move operations to foreign countries”, said Michael Zhong, an analyst with Beijing-based cryptocurrency research firm TokenInsight.
“Bitcoin mining will no longer be dominated by China but become more decentralised,” he said.
The cryptocurrency mining company is also planning to set up 200,000 units of mining equipment in China to benefit from low-cost hydroelectric power, 21 Cryptos reported last month. They hope to take advantage of the cheap power during the summer after southwestern China goes through its rainy season, which begins in May.
Bitmain declined to comment on the proposed rule changes.