John C. K. Daly
While many crypto-currency advocates worldwide promote this sector as the next step in international finance, multiple governments are becoming increasingly leery because of digital currencies’ energy-intensive mining requirements, volatile price swings, potential for fraud, associated criminal issues, and privacy concerns. China, formally the global leader in crypto-currency generation, with nearly half of the world’s crypto-mining operations, in 2021 began preventing its citizens from mining or holding crypto-currencies. As a result, the nation’s global share of crypto-mining decreased from 75.5 to 46 percent. Chinese crypto-miners moved their operations abroad, at which point neighboring Kazakhstan’s global share dramatically surged by 610 percent, from 1.4 percent to 8.6 percent (Caixin Daily, July 29; Jbs.cam.ac.uk, July 15). And in a policy shift further sharply diverging from its giant eastern neighbor, bank accounts for crypto-currency will soon be available in Kazakhstan as the country expands its crypto-mining potential to the global fiscal market (Kapital.kz, June 25).