The authorities of Kazakhstan approved a premium on electricity tariffs for cryptocurrency miners. Earlier, Kazakhstan was named among the countries preferable by Chinese miners who seek regions to relocate their farms amid mining ban in China.
The President of Kazakhstan, Kassym-Zhomart Tokayev, signed a law amending the legislation of the Central Asian republic and introducing an increase in tariffs for electricity used in energy-intensive industries.
The bill was approved by the Senate in June. According to the document, the additional payment to the basic tariff in the amount of 1 tenge per 1 kWh is introduced for energy-intensive industries. The new tariffication rules will come into force on January 1, 2022. The Kazakh authorities say that the additional fee will "bring out of the shadows" those miners who currently are not legalizing their income in accordance with local legislation.
Representatives of the local crypto industry sharply criticized the bill. Members of the Kazakhstan National Association of the Blockchain and Data Center Industry told Crypto News that the decision "would have a very negative impact on the investment attractiveness of the industry." In particular, the rise in the cost of electricity may scare off Chinese companies that are looking for new regions in order to relocate their production facilities due to the ban on mining in China. Kazakhstan was considered among other potential directions for relocation, since over the past few years, the Kazakh authorities have shown a benevolent attitude towards the crypto industry.
In May, Shenzhen-based Bit Mining announced plans to build a 100 MW, $9 million mining data center in Kazakhstan in partnership with two local firms. In June, when the Chinese authorities increased pressure on bitcoin mining operations, the company began shipping mining devices there. Furthermore, mining equipment manufacturer Canaan, headquartered in Hangzhou, China, opened an after-sales service center in Kazakhstan as more Chinese miners were considering relocating to Central Asia.