Kazakhstan identifies illegal cryptocurrency mining operations

The Ministry of Energy of the Republic of Kazakhstan has identified 13 cryptocurrency mining operations.

Such operations have been found across the country; in regions such as Pavlodar, Karaganda, Shymkent, Akmola, Kostanai, Turkestan, Almaty and the cities of Nur-Sultan.

The shutdown is part of the government’s aim to regulate the ever-expanding popularity of bitcoin (BTC) mining, an activity that generates a mass of energy, with a total power consumption of 202 megawatts.

The government’s official statement pointed out that miners were still using a large amount of energy, meaning the efforts taken to discover and disconnect mining farms from the electrical networks will continue to take place. This will be undertaken by authorities carrying out operational investigations.

Kazakhstan stands globally as the second largest BTC provider, a close second after China cracked down on crypto. It has been said that Kazakhstan held over 18% of the world’s BTC hash rate since August 2021.

Since China suspended its laws on cryptocurrency mining, Kazakhstan became a desired destination for operations due to its low electricity prices. Kazakhstan’s mining industry has grown throughout the country for some time, with the president approving a tax category for BTC mining in June 2021.

However, after recent news this month on the country suffering losses due to electricity shortages, causing the government to consider the suspension of crypto mining altogether, it seems the country may to on the road to losing its hash rate share for a variety of reasons.

This could cause it to descend from its top spot as one of the most successful BTC mining countries to date. Crypto experts expect this drop to commence next month.

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Updated: 02/24/2022 — 10:00