China’s clampdown on cryptocurrencies doesn’t seem to have reached its boiling point. Apparently, the country is once again charging against the industry, as its State Planner reportedly wants to ban Bitcoin mining.
Growing Government Pressure on Cryptocurrencies in China
According to a recent report, China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NRDC), formerly known as the State Planning Commission, is seeking public opinions on a list with industries that it intends to eliminate, restrict, or encourage.
Reportedly, Bitcoin mining, as well as 450 other activities, should be prohibited because “they did not adhere to relevant laws and regulations, were unsafe wasted resources or polluted the environment.”
The public has until May 7th to express thoughts on the matter. It’s worth noting that the document hasn’t stipulated a target date or a plan to follow, hinting that the ban may take place immediately.
Haven’t We Seen This Before?
China’s overly negative stance on everything crypto-related has already caused the local industry plenty of headaches. But we’ve been there before.
Back in 2017, the country began its clampdown, especially towards Bitcoin miners. Officials were reported to plan to limit the power consumption to the industry and they even asked local governments to navigate miners out of their own business, according to reports back in very early 2018. This immediately caused Bitcoin miners to seek safe haven, moving elsewhere. Bitmain, which runs two of the largest Bitcoin mining pools, relocated its headquarters in Singapore, for example.
In August 2018, the country officially banned all crypto-related commercial activities. Moreover, the country’s most popular messaging app, WeChat, was asked to close accounts of crypto and blockchain-related news outlets.
It didn’t end there. China also moved to block 124 offshore exchanges, again in August.
China banning Bitcoin is a good old story, even in 2014 there is evidence to it.
Despite the country’s overly negative stance on the matter of cryptocurrencies, this doesn’t seem to have phased the local enthusiasm.
In September 2018, following the ban, reports started circling the space, outlining that many retail investors are continuing to use ‘illegal’ cryptocurrency exchanges. They were reportedly doing so by converting their fiat money into Tether, the most popular stablecoin, and exchange between their cryptocurrency wallets directly. In order to mask their online trails, users would take advantage of simple VPN services.
In other words, China’s political pressure on cryptocurrencies doesn’t seem to change the people’s sentiment that much, as of now.
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