In response to increased regulatory pressures in China, Bitmain wants to set up shop in Canada.
Bitmain is one of the largest and perhaps the most well-known bitcoin mining and hardware companies in the world. Its primary operations are, as is expected for a company that’s headquartered in Beijing, located in Asia (notably central China and the autonomous Inner Mongolia) but, as per recent reports, it looks as though the company might be looking to diversify its geocredentials.
China Losing Market Share
It is well known in this space that China’s government has sought to crack down on cryptocurrencies over the last twelve months or so. Policymakers and regulators in the Asian superpower have forced exchanges to close, restricted the flow of cryptocurrencies into, out of, and inside the nation, and is now putting considerable pressure on bitcoin miners.
Bitmain falls into this latter category and it’s believed that this regulatory pressure is behind the company’s desire to branch out to alternative regions that operate under alternative (and, in most cases, far more accommodative) regulatory frameworks.
The latest reports suggest that Bitmain is now looking at Canada as a potential home for a portion of its international mining operations.
Specifically, and as confirmed in an email from the company’s spokesman, Nishant Sharma, Bitmain is looking at sites in Quebec and is in talks with regional power authorities in the province.
An Attractive Location
Quebec is an attractive home for bitcoin mining operations for a variety of reasons, including access to cheap, renewable energy and a climate that’s complementary to the physical demands of this sort of large-scale operation (in other words, the cool climate mitigates the necessity for expensive cooling equipment at the mining sites).
Here’s what David Vincent, director of business development at Hydro Quebec distribution, had to say about Quebec’s positioning in this space:
Of the world’s top five largest blockchain players, we have at least three or four.
It’s worth noting that this isn’t the first foray into the Canadian market for Bitmain. The Independent reports that Bitmain’s spokesman acknowledged that Bitmain has been mining in Canada since 2016, though he did not say where.
The company is also reportedly looking to set up shop in Switzerland, another region that is known in the sector for its accommodative cryptocurrency framework.
Is Canada a good choice? What does this mean for China’s position in this sector? Let us know in the comments below!
Image courtesy of Aurelien Foucault/Quartz, Pixabay