Russia becomes 2nd most powerful BTC miner in the world
As of the end of the first quarter of 2023, Russia ranked as the world’s second most powerful Bitcoin (BTC) mining provider, according to the Moscow Times, citing data from Bitriver.
During the first three months of the year, Russia generated one gigawatt (GW) of mining power, according to the Moscow Times report.
Country rankings as of Q1
The US remained in its position as the leading country with the most significant mining power, as it generates 3-4 GW of mining capacity.
After Russia with 1 GW, the Gulf countries follow as the third-largest mining power in the world with around 700 megawatts (MW) of combined power. The list continues with Canada, Malaysia, Argentina, Iceland, Paraguay, Kazakhstan, and Ireland with 400 MW, 300 MW, 135 MW, 120 MW, 100-125 MW, 100 MW, and 90 MW, respectively.
In previous years, Russia had been placed third in the charts regarding power generated for mining, with Kazakhstan being second. However, at the end of 2021, Russia’s mining capacity was ahead of the US and Kazakhstan.
Role of regulations
The ranking amongst the leaders of BTC mining is heavily affected by the regulatory changes countries go through.
A vivid example of this is Kazakhstan. The country occupied 18% of the global hash rate in late 2021 when it was the second-largest mining power. However, the country started experiencing an energy crisis at the end of 2021, which turned the government’s eyes on the miners.
In an effort to combat the energy crisis, the country took discouraging measures against miners, such as cutting off their power supplies, tightening the regulatory framework, and introducing a differentiated tax rate. These changes took a toll on the country’s mining power, and the country entered 2023 by representing only 6.4% of the global hash rate.
According to experts, Russia’s advancement in the charts is likely to be related to Kazakhstan’s changing attitude towards mining. In the meantime, Russia’s mining activities are expected to grow due to its cold climate and various regions that offer cheap electricity. The US’ take on BTC mining is yet to be determined. Therefore it is difficult to foresee if the US will hinder mining activities and leave the first place to Russia or further increase its power to grow the gap.