China signalled its intent to ban cryptocurrency mining, dealing a fresh blow to an industry buffeted by tumbling virtual currency prices, stiff competition and waning investor interest.
The National Development Reform Commission, the country’s powerful economic planner, this week listed crypto-mining among a plethora of industries it intends to eliminate because they “seriously wasted resources” or polluted the environment.
The agency is seeking public feedback on the guidelines and indicated that the crypto-mining ban could take effect as soon as they’re formally issued. The consultation period ends on May 7.
While China was once home to about 70 per cent of Bitcoin mining and 90 per cent of trades, authorities have waged a nearly two-year campaign to shrink the crypto industry amid concerns over speculative bubbles, fraud and wasteful energy consumption.