Countries That Have Banned Crypto Mining
Reason & Punishment (If There Is Any)
|Bangladesh||“Bitcoin is not a legal tender of any country.” 12years in prison.|
|Bolivia||“It is illegal to use any currency that is not issued and controlled by a government.”|
|Ecuador||They are building their own electronic cash system.|
|India||The banks cannot use and/or support crypto- currencies. BTCX India was forced to close. However, common citizens are still mining.|
|Morocco||Transactions made via cryptocurrencies are banned and will be punishable by fines.|
|Nigeria||All transaction in Bitcoin and other virtual currencies have been banned in Nigeria since January 2017.|
|Colombia||Cryptocurrencies have been banned since 2016.|
|Taiwan||After a scandal that involves kidnapping a millionaire and paying the ransom in Bitcoin, crypto-currencies have been banned in the country.|
|Kyrgyzstan||Banned since 2014|
|Vietnam||Banned since 2014|
|Nepal||Miners get arrested and sent to jail|
Countries That Are Friendly to Crypto Mining
One of the most important issues in choosing a country to operate Bitcoin mining farms from, is the cost of electricity to mine 1 Bitcoin (or any other cryptocurrency). The lower this cost, the higher the profit. In this context, take a look at the table below to see the “cheapest” countries to mine cryptocurrencies:
Electricity Cost of Mining 1 Bitcoin (*)
|Trinidad and Tobago||1.190 USD|
|Germany / Denmark||14.275 USD|
|South Korea||26.170 USD|
However, the cost of electricity is not the only factor. The country itself must have regulations “friendly” to crypto-miners too. Otherwise, that country may turn into another China where miners would need to relocate from after having set up expensive operations. In this regard, these are currently the countries most friendly to crypto mining, that also offer relatively affordable electricity, cool enough temperatures, so not as much cooling is needed, and in Iceland’s case, geothermal heat.
Countries Most Friendly to Crypto Mining
Canada: Canada is becoming the most popular place for crypto mining farms to move their operations to. Canada is home to many crypto start-ups and is relatively receptive to crypto in general. The world’s first crypt-ATM was installed in Vancouver in 2013. At the moment, there are more than 20 crypto-ATMs in the city. Thousands of merchants accept crypto- payments too. In terms of climate, Canada is always cold and this is important for miners: ASICs must be cooled constantly. Canada also has a stable political environment which is also important – it makes it less likely that the regulations would suddenly change.
Iceland: Iceland is colder than most other countries, which makes for huge cost savings on the need for cooling. Iceland also has natural geothermal energy which can be used to power the mining farms. That’s why this country keeps attracting more interest in running crypto mining operations there. Genesis Mining, probably the largest cloud mining provider, already operates out of Iceland. Iceland also has the lowest electricity cost among other European countries (0.080 EUR per kWh). Geothermal and hydroelectric plants around the country produce renewable energy. Cryptocurrencies are banned in Iceland, but mining is legal and possible.
Johann Snorri Sigurbergsson, the spokesman for Icelandic energy producer HS Orka says “we are receiving about one call per day from foreign mining companies interested in setting up projects here.” He also says “If all these projects are realized, we won’t have enough energy for it.” (**) According to Jason Scott, a Bitcoin entrepreneur who monitors crypto currency mining in Iceland, somewhere between 2% and 8% of the world’s crypto currency mining is happening in this country. (***) However, miners are not that welcome in Iceland and sentiment is turning increasingly against Bitcoin mining, as citizens believe the mining farms are using up the country’s energy without putting any benefit back into Iceland. Politicians think that “they produce nothing for Iceland, pay no taxes, so what’s the point?” (****)
Finland: Has lots of crypto-ATMs, still cold enough, and home to many exchanges. Finland also has a lot of potential for miners. Finland isn’t yet a hub of crypto mining activity but this could change.
* * *
In general, Canada and North European countries are the “friendliest” to miners. The majority of Chinese miners will probably have to relocate to these countries for the future of their operations.