An autonomous region in China is set to hunt and close down all “illegal” mining operations before the end of August according to a report by a local news source.
A senior official from Xinjiang’s Economic and Information Commission (EIC) confirmed that the agency has issued a notice to local utility companies in Xinjiang Uyghur to report and close all illegal mining operations by August 30. The notice was drafted by the EIC’s unit in charge of the region’s utility issues.
By illegal mining operations, the body is referring to unauthorized “mining” enterprises that fail to go through the formalities of industrial and commercial registration, tax registration, social security, and other insurances under national laws and regulations.
Also, mining farms with non-regulated electricity use, which includes not signing a contract with local power supply companies will be blacklisted.
A report on its progress in closing such mining operations is to be submitted by the utility agencies. The EIC concludes with an ultimatum that “local utility agencies and companies will be held accountable if they failed to shut down ‘illegal’ bitcoin mining operations.”
Crackdown Already Underway
Scott Meng, chief executive of a Canadian blockchain startup, who jointly owns bitcoin mining farms in the Xinjiang region, will be among those badly hit by the latest crackdown.
Scott told a new agency that “he has two partners in the region with 68,000 crypto miners. Right now, his partners have been crying for help, urging him to look for places in the U.S. and Canada (as substitutes).”
The big battle for Scott would be the gigantic task of how he would be able to get electricity at the new locations and then having to build farms from scratch.
The latest move by the EIC marks a string of efforts made by the agency towards ensuring the electricity rates for bitcoin mining operations are recouped and also that the region does not breed illegal bitcoin mining farms.
Last month, the agency also warned Xinjiang municipal governments about supporting bitcoin mining companies, because their “operations contribute nothing to the region’s economy besides consuming a spiking volume of electricity.”