Kazakhstan shuts down 106 crypto mining farms

The government of Kazakhstan has identified 106 cryptocurrency mining farms operating without a license. Authorities have halted 51 of them, while the remaining 55 have voluntarily ceased operations.

Earlier this year, Kazakhstan “declared war” on illegal digital asset mining farms. Minister Bagdat Musin stated that they could negatively impact the nation’s energy grid:

GRAY CODE PEOPLE ARE DAMING A LOT TO OUR NETWORK. ENERGY COSTS OF INCIDENTIAL MINING ESTIMATE EXCEED 1 GIGAWATT.

According to a recent announcement, authorities forced 106 cryptocurrency mining farms to suspend their operations, 55 of which closed voluntarily.

51 of them, suspected of tax evasion and operating in special economic zones without regulatory approval, were terminated by law enforcement.

The investigation revealed that several prominent political and business figures were behind the illegal companies. These include Bolat Nazarbayev and the brother of former President Nursultan Nazarbayev, Kairat Itegmenov, Kazakhstan’s 17th richest man, and Alexander Klebanov, chairman of Central Asian Electric Power Corp.

Additionally, authorities seized more than 65,000 mining equipment from those farms, worth more than $190 million. They also opened 25 criminal cases involving people linked to the companies.

It should be noted that cryptocurrency mining is an important market for Kazakhstan. This former Soviet state accounts for 18.1% of the global hash rate. The US is the only country leading with 35.4%.