Some of the mines were alleged to be linked to prominent political and corporate personalities, including the brother of former President Nursultan Nazarbayev.
According to a government statement released today, Kazakhstan’s crackdown on illegal crypto mines has caused another 106 miners to cease operations.
According to the statement, 55 mines shuttered voluntarily and 51 were forced to close after investigations by the country’s financial monitoring agency and other official organisations.
According to the statement, the 51 are suspected of tax and customs cheating as well as deploying equipment in special economic zones without authorisation.
During the inspections, it was discovered that certain well-known politicians and business leaders were participating in crypto mining. Bolat Nazarbayev, the brother of former President Nursultan Nazarbayev, Alexander Klebanov, the chairman of Central Asian Electric Power Corp., which, according to its website, provides electricity to more than 2 million people, and Kairat Itegmenov, Kazakhstan’s 17th-richest man, were among those named in the statement.
Since autumn 2021, the Central Asian country has been experiencing acute electricity shortages, owing in part to an inflow of crypto miners from China, but also to infrastructure breakdowns. To address the energy crisis, the administration has chosen to crack down on unauthorised miners.
According to a statement, the financial monitoring office has initiated 25 criminal charges and seized 67,000 computers worth 100 billion tenge ($193 million).
The government announced in late February that it had discovered 202 megawatts of illegal crypto mining.
Disclaimer: These are the writer’s opinions and should not be considered investment advice. Readers should do their own research.