China’s Bitcoin Mining Exodus

Michael Kern
3 min readJun 21, 2021

During the presidency of Donald Trump, there was an evident trend of decline in student and work visas from Asian countries, predominantly China. Now, it seems that the US can expect an influx of Chinese workers, but it has nothing to do with a new US administration. This influx will be driven by the nature of economics.

Due to the recent crackdown on cryptocurrency mining and trading by Chinese authorities, the now-100,000-strong crypto mining ‘workforce’ is at an occupational crossroads.

Last month, China imposed new rules on cryptocurrencies with the People’s Bank of China saying that financial services companies and payment services would be banned from pricing or conducting business in virtual currencies, citing zero protection for consumers should they incur any losses from crypto transactions.

“Recently, cryptocurrency prices have skyrocketed and plummeted, and speculative trading of cryptocurrency has rebounded, seriously infringing on the safety of people’s property and disrupting the normal economic and financial order,” the regulator’s statement said. Chinese Vice Premier Liu He also said that tighter crypto regulation was needed to protect the financial system.

In order to curb money laundering, cryptocurrency trading has been illegal in China since 2019. The Chinese authorities issued similar bans in 2013 and 2017.

Considering that at least 65% of global miners working on the bitcoin blockchain were based in China, experts are already calling it the “Great miner exodus.” Some of China’s provinces already have given miners “eviction notices”, blaming them for power shortages.

Local media is reporting that Chinese crypto miners have already started packing their bags, some selling their equipment or just transporting their machines to neighboring countries.

Quite a few of them are expected to move to the US, with CNBC reporting that Texas might be the obvious choice.

Texas often has some of the world’s lowest energy prices, and its share of renewables is growing over time. In addition to that, the state’s authorities are crypto-friendly. Also, last month Chinese BIT Mining announced plans to invest $25 million in a cryptocurrency mining data center in Texas.

Michael Kern

I am a journalist and financial copywriter. My work has been featured on CNN Money, Business Insider, The Guardian, and Nasdaq.