Cryptocurrency Mining Soars in Vietnam – Over 7000 Rigs Imported
The Ho Chi Minh City Customs Department has revealed the number of known mining rigs imported into Vietnam in 2017. Over 7,000 rigs were brought into the country, mostly from China, with over 5,000 entering since November. While Vietnam is clamping down on the use of bitcoin as a means of payment, mining rigs are not on the list of prohibited items.
The Ho Chi Minh City Customs Department has revealed that 7,005 bitcoin mining rigs cleared customs from the beginning of 2017 to the middle of December, local publications reported.
Previously, the department announced that it received 98 import declarations for 1,478 mining rigs from January 1 to October 31, valued over $2,182 million, Dan Tri reported.
Then, from the beginning of November to December 21, 2017, the number of mining rigs imported into Vietnam jumped by another 5,527, making the total number of rigs imported 7,005 in total. The 5,527 machines were mostly brought in from China through 8 organizations and individuals, the news outlet noted.
The General Department of Vietnam Customs previously requested the State Bank of Vietnam, the Ministry of Information and Communication, and Ministry of Industry and Trade to comment on the import of mining rigs. The central bank confirmed that mining rigs for bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are “not related to the use of virtual currency as a means of payment.” As such, they are “not part of the management functions and tasks of the State Bank.”
Subsequently, the General Department of Customs issued a notice clarifying that mining rigs are not on the list of prohibited items. Viet Times elaborated:
After the customs announced that bitcoin mining rigs are not on the list of goods banned from import in accordance with the state regulations, the number of machines imported in the last two months of the year has soared to more than 5,000 machines.
Deputy Director of the State Bank of Vietnam, Nguyen Hoang Minh, said that bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are “not a legal means of payment in Vietnam. Therefore, the issuance, supply, use of bitcoin and other similar virtual currency as a means of payment is prohibited,” Vietnam Biz conveyed.
Some businesses and individuals are concerned that the import of mining rigs will also be prohibited, the news outlet noted.
The Ho Chi Minh City Customs Department has already recommended General Department of Vietnam Customs “not to import these types of machinery,” according to Dan Tri. However, so far “the General Department of Customs has exchanged documents” with relevant departments concerning the import of mining rigs.