fter surpassing Russia in February 2021, the oil-rich Central Asian nation of Kazakhstan has been the third-largest contributor to Bitcoin mining for more than a year.
As of January 2022, Kazakhstan made up 13.22% of the overall Bitcoin hash rate, coming in third place behind China (21.11%) and the United States (37.84%) in terms of historical dominance.
According to data from the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance, Kazakhstan's absolute hash rate contribution (monthly average) was 24.8 exahashes per second (Eh/s) along similar timescales. China and the US each provided 39.6 Eh/s and the US 71 Eh/s.
Kazakhstan is heavily dependent on non-renewable energy sources, such as oil (over 50%), coal (28%), and natural gas (17%), according to the International Energy Agency (IEA), which is co-funded by the European Union. This dependence will continue until 2020. The research showed:
“Most coal is used for electricity and heat generation, while most oil is used by final consumers, particularly in road transport.”
However, other participants like Malaysia, Germany, and Iran continue to lose market share to the top three nations that contribute to the Bitcoin hash rate. As soon as the Chinese government outlawed the mining and trading of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, Kazakhstan was one of the first countries to accept the displaced Chinese miners.
The temporary mining prohibition allowed the United States to surpass China as the largest Bitcoin mining hub after China's mining operations were resumed in September 2022.
According to local media, Kazakhstan wants to make a system for converting cryptocurrency to cash legal.
President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev expressed his vision for making Kazakhstan a leader in the field of digital technology, the cryptocurrency ecosystem, and controlled mining during a speech at the international conference Digital Bridge 2022
“We are ready to go further. If this financial instrument shows its further relevance and security, it will certainly receive full legal recognition,” Tokayev stated.