The Chinese government is cracking down on cryptocurrency mining operations in the Sichuan province
Some time ago, the Chinese government said it would crack down on cryptocurrency mining operations located within its borders. Large-scale players were likely to be the first targets, and some companies even considered relocating to North American shores. The province of Sichuan seems to be spearheading the government's anti-Bitcoin crusade, as it has instructed local power companies to cut power to suspected mining operations.
8BTCnews reports that several mining firms have begun to shut shop in the region. Footage of people scrambling to switch off racks full of ASICs has emerged online, indicating that the local authorities are taking the matter seriously. As mentioned earlier, miners are looking at North America as a new base of operations, which could explain why a consignment of 3,000 kilograms worth of mining equipment has been found heading to the United States.
However, relocating to the United States could be a logistical nightmare for smaller players, given the distance between the two regions. On the other hand, Kazakhstan shares a border with China and promises to serve as a much better destination for estranged miners. Moreover, Kazakhstan's laws make it easy for companies to set up cryptocurrency exchanges. Lastly, electricity rates in the country could be as low as 1 Tenge (US$0.00232) per kilowatt-hour in the near future.
Interestingly enough, Sichuan also happens to be the epicenter of Bitcoin mining operations in China. The sudden ban has triggered a rapid drop in the price of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. An estimated 75% of Bitcoin is mined in China, so a nationwide crackdown could have some serious long-term implications for the cryptocurrency market in general. Unfortunately, it is only a matter of time before the Chinese government's anti-cryptocurrency measures get implemented in other provinces.