Russia Secures Third Place in Bitcoin Global Mining Rates Following Crypto Ban in China
Previously, the country was rated fourth. The ranking changed after the world's biggest player in Bitcoin and altcoin mining, China, exited the market due to a government ban on trading and mining crypto tokens.
Russia is now ranked as the world's third-biggest bitcoin miner, with the country being responsible for 11.23% of the global "hash rate" – the computing power that is used to mine the crypto token, the University of Cambridge has stated in a report this week. The country is bested by its neighbour Kazakhstan, which is responsible for a little over 18% of the global hash rate and the US, which accounted for 35.4% of the world's bitcoin mining power.
Several factors contributed to the change in Russia's status as a global miner of the popular cryptocurrency. The levels of bitcoin mining have grown by 30% in a year-on-year comparison. This growth comes in the wake of last year's partial legalisation of activities involving cryptocurrencies, which used to reside in a legal "grey area" – now Russians can legally trade and mine cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin, but they are banned from using it in day-to-day transactions with local businesses.
But probably the main reason for the shift in the top-3 leaders in bitcoin mining was policy changes in China – formerly the world's biggest crypto-miner: this summer, Beijing outlawed all forms of cryptocurrency trading and transactions, as well as the mining of all tokens.
24 September 2021, 16:18 GMT
Following these changes, the hash rate of the country, which mined 75% of all bitcoins in 2019, dropped to zero, with local miners selling off their ASIC miner machines and graphics cards to buyers worldwide at discount rates. Apparently, some of them arrived in Russia, where relatively low energy bills have allowed for the emergence of mining "farms".
At the same time, the government has reported an increase in cases of so-called illegal mining – when people organise crypto-farms illegally connected to power lines to steal energy. The trend is taking place as the bitcoin price has gone through several periods of rises and sharp dives this year alone, with the token recently regaining the level of $60,000 per coin.