China threatens to stop Bitcoin mining


China said it is planning to ban Bitcoin mining in the country.

Reuters News reported that China’s state planner has submitted a new draft proposal which will legally put an end to Bitcoin mining. Not entirely surprising, as China has begun weeding out most of the Bitcoin mining operations in the country over the past two years.

According to the report, the new proposal, however, seems to indicate Bitcoin mining does “not adhere to relevant laws and regulation, or wastes resources”. It seems the latter angle will be the main reason for this approach, albeit no one ever knows for sure how government officials think when it comes to cryptocurrency activity.

The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) said on Monday it was seeking public opinions on a revised list of industries it wants to encourage, restrict or eliminate. The list was first published in 2011.

The draft for a revised list added cryptocurrency mining, including that of bitcoin, to more than 450 activities the NDRC said should be phased out as they did not adhere to relevant laws and regulations, were unsafe, wasted resources or polluted the environment.

It did not stipulate a target date or plan for how to eliminate bitcoin mining, meaning that such activities should be phased out immediately, the document said. The public has until May 7 to comment on the draft.

State-owned newspaper Securities Times said on Tuesday the draft list “distinctly reflects the attitude of the country’s industrial policy” toward the cryptocurrency industry.

“The NDRC’s move is in line overall with China’s desire to control different layers of the rapidly growing crypto industry, and does not yet signal a major shift in policy,” said Jehan Chu, managing partner at blockchain investment firm Kenetic.

“I believe China simply wants to ‘reboot’ the crypto industry into one that they have oversight on, the same approach they took with the Internet.”