Kazakhstan is moving forward with regulation that will further stifle its bitcoin mining industry.
The country’s federal parliamentary body has completed secondary approval of a bill “On Digital Assets in the Republic of Kazakhstan.” With a third approval, the legislation will introduce new licensing requirements for bitcoin miners based on their facility ownership and operational structure. It would also require that miners purchase their electricity from the energy provider Korem at market rates.
Previously, specific reporting and tax requirements were implemented, including registration of names, locations and quarterly reports to the government. These occurred as a result of the major influx of mining amidst energy shortages and protests, all while bitcoin miners fled China as a response to the government’s banning of bitcoin.
Kazakhstan’s close proximity to China and previously highly favorable energy access led to the large amounts of hash rate migrating to the country. Afterwards, Kazakhstan went as far as seizing up to $200 million in mining equipment who did not comply with regulation, and the country continues to try and absorb the benefits of the influx in bitcoin mining using legislation like this most recently approved bill.
Bitcoin Magazine previously reported on regulation in Kazakhstan, citing a report from the Russian media outlet Tass. In the report, Ekaterina Smyshlyaeva, a member of the Committee on Economic Reform and Regional Development of the Majilis (Kazakhstan’s federal parliamentary body) detailed the government’s intentions, describing how, “Kazakhstan was used as a raw material appendage of the blockchain industry. [Through] bills, we oblige miners to license in Kazakhstan, that is, to create legal entities and become full-fledged subjects of taxation.”