China Scraps Plan to Eliminate Bitcoin Mining Industry

Home » China Scraps Plan to Eliminate Bitcoin Mining Industry

Over six months after the China Development and Reform Commission proposed to categorize the Bitcoin mining as an industry that was to be phased out from the country, it appears that the plans have been scrapped out by the agency.

The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) which is a top-level economic planning agency under the State Council of China, published a new finalized catalog for guiding industry restructuring on Wednesday which is supposed to take effect on 1st January 2020.

The final version will replace the current one which was published in 2011. This final version has removed Bitcoin mining by the agency or other virtual currency mining activities from the initial proposed category of industries which are to be eliminated from China. The finalized catalog does not include any description related to Bitcoin mining or virtual currency.

The NDRC was formally established in 1998 and now currently has 26 cabinet-level departments which all of them together form the State Council of the Chinese central government. The NDRC’s main role is to focus on studying and penning economic reform strategies and policies that are to be executed at local level governments.

The industry catalog of the NDRC was first published in 2005 and it grouped all industrial sectors into three types. These are the ones that the agency advises the country to encourage, restrict or eliminate.

April this year saw the initial draft of the latest catalog update being released. It classified “virtual currency mining, such as the production process of Bitcoin” under the category that was to be eliminated. It recommended local governments to phase out Bitcoin mining from the country and it is estimated to account for half of the global hashing power of Bitcoin.

This move by the country at the time was taken by many, which included even major news outlets as a sign that China was planning to ban Bitcoin mining although the policy itself doesn’t really mean a Bitcoin mining ban.

The draft plan revision comes after month of public consultation. On Wednesday during a NDRC press conference, officials said that since the initial draft release, the agency has received more than 2,500 suggestions regarding various issues and most were taken into consideration. However, the officials did not comment on any particular suggestion that is related to Bitcoin mining.


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