Russian State-Run Tech Firm to Decrease Spending on Blockchain by 50

Russian State-Run Tech Firm to Decrease Spending on Blockchain by 50%

Russian government-backed corporation Rostec intends to cut spendings on the blockchain development in the country by at least 50%.

According to Rostec’s roadmap, the organization is planning to spend 28.4 billion rubles ($453.2 million) on the development of blockchain technologies in Russia by 2024, instead of initial 55 billion ($877.8 million) to 85 billion rubles ($1.3 billion). The news was reported by domestic news outlet Kommersant on Jan. 27. The corporation detailed that the introduction of blockchain tech into the product labeling system will require 650 million rubles ($10.3 million), into healthcare system 1.17 billion rubles ($18.6 million), of which 575 million rubles ($9.1 million) will be allocated to the tracking system of counterfeit and pharmaceuticals consumption. The implementation of blockchain in the housing and utility services will ostensibly require 475 million rubles ($7.5 million).

Revision of blockchain’s potential effect on economy

Rostec has revised their assessment of the potential direct and indirect economic effect of blockchain development in the country, whereas earlier versions of the roadmap suggested significantly larger investments in the technology. The downgraded forecast of the economic effect is ostensibly connected to the change in the macroeconomic situation. Rostec’s spokesperson stipulated that currently there is a change in the perception of the technology, “a self-cleaning of the market from copy projects that do not have a development strategy and a certain market niche,” while the Russian market in these conditions is developing most smoothly and is choosing the path of “less risky development.” The corporation has sent the document to the Ministry of Communications and the Analytical Center for the government of Russia for approval.

Russia’s turn to blockchain

Worth noting, the move comes in the wake of the appointment of the new Prime Minister of the Russian Federation, Mikhail Mishustin, who called on the country to prioritize development of the digital economy. In the meantime, Russia has implemented a number of blockchain projects in various sectors. Last December, Russia’s national energy grid operator Rosetti began testing a blockchain solution for payments in the retail electricity sector. The project aims to automate and make transactions between energy producers, suppliers and consumers more transparent. The country’s mining and smelting giant Nornickel also commenced testing its platform for digital metal tokens in collaboration with physical commodities trading group Trafigura Group Ltd., metals finance and logistics firm Traxys SA and materials technology and recycling group Umicore SA.

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Ana Alexandre

Total change in her career took Anastasia into the world of analytics and business information as a researcher and translator in 2010. Some time later she got into FinTech, a dynamically developing segment at the intersection of the financial services and technology. Ana joined Cointelegraph in September 2017.


Bitcoin Breaks 7-Month Downtrend But Must Clear These Hurdles to 10K

Bitcoin Breaks 7-Month Downtrend But Must Clear These Hurdles to $10K

The price of Bitcoin (BTC) found strong support at $8,200 last week, after which it started to rally toward $8,800 earlier today. Alongside with that, the total market capitalization of crypto found a support at $215 billion and starting to look bullish. Will this mean that the correction is over, and crypto is trending upwards?

Bitcoin still in an uptrend since the low at $6,500

Bitcoin is still trending upwards since the low at $6,500, as previous resistance zones have become support. A recent example is showing a bounce on the green area, which is the $8,200 level. This type of bullish support/resistance flips is a common occurrence in an uptrend market. A break below $8,200 would have demonstrated weakness, as that level would not have provided enough buying pressure and support. Losing such a level would usually have been followed by a continuation downwards. An example is found after the push to $10,000 in November 2019. The chart is also showing a clear breakout from the 7-month downtrend. A retest was done at $7,600, after which the price of Bitcoin rallied towards $9,200 for temporary resistance.

The 4-hour chart of Bitcoin is showing a healthy support/resistance flip at $8,200, after which price broke through the $8,500 resistance. Currently, the price of Bitcoin is facing the next resistance at $8,800. However, it’s quite unlikely to see an immediate breakthrough at this level as the indicators on smaller time frames show exhaustion of this upwards move. Additionally, some significant resistances are shown on the chart, i.e. $9,000 and $9,200-9,400, which are two hurdles to overcome if the price of Bitcoin wants to continue moving upwards. On the support side, a retest of $8,500 looks quite healthy for confirmation of new support. Range-bound movements are now likely to happen if price can’t break through $8,800 or drop below $8,500.

Total market capitalization flips a crucial level for support

The total market capitalization of cryptocurrencies is showing an essential bounce from the blue zone (level around $217-218 billion). A retest there was quite healthy as anticipated in a recent article. This retest is now completed and shows intense buying pressure as the total market capitalization has already rallied up to $238 billion. This retest also indicates confirmation of the uptrend with the total market cap breaking the 7-month downtrend as well. The first hurdle to overcome now is the $247 billion level. If that is broken, continuation towards $270 and $300 billion is likely to occur.

Altcoins showing more strength than Bitcoin

The total market capitalization chart of altcoins is looking healthy The market cap rallied from $52 billion to $80 billion. Only a slight retracement occurred to $71 billion, which means that it is stuck in a narrow range. If we check the rest of the chart, we can spot many tests of the $80 billion level in recent months. Around three tests have happened prior to this latest one, which means that the resistance should become weaker. Remember, the more times a resistance gets tested, the more exhausted sellers will get, and the weaker a resistance becomes. On the other hand, this also happens with support zones. The $6,000 support of Bitcoin in 2018 was tested many times before it broke down. Given that these tests of the $80 billion level occurred quite frequently, a breakout to the upside is the most likely scenario at this point, meaning that the altcoin market cap could rally towards $120 billion.

The bullish scenario for Bitcoin

The most bullish scenario would be a clear breakout of $8,800 and a continuation from there. However, as stated earlier, I find it unlikely to see such a move occur in one go. A retest and consolidation would be more likely including a likely retest of the $8,500. This is healthy and would be almost required before the price of Bitcoin can continue to face higher resistance levels. If Bitcoin can hold the $8,500 area for support, I see a breakthrough of the $8,800 and $9,000 as likely, after which $10,000 will become the primary target. Moreover, clearing $10,000 could bring the price of Bitcoin towards $11,000 as well.

The bearish scenario for Bitcoin

Typically, the bearish scenario has a similar pattern in the beginning, as BTC needs to be rejected at the $8,800 level. However, the difference is in the subsequent pattern. If the price of Bitcoin is to make lower highs with weak bounces, the downward trend is likely to resume. If this occurs, I’d be aiming for bearish retest (support/resistances flips) of the $8,500 level as a potential short opportunity. The main target would then be the $7,600 area. But first, the price needs to be rejected at $8,800-9,000 to get these scenarios going. Overall, the $8,100 support/resistance flip doesn’t say that we’re bearish at this point. Especially, since that price has broken at a 7-month downtrend.

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Michaël van de Poppe

Michael is a full time day/swingtrader in cryptocurrencies, based at the Amsterdam Stock Exchange & interested in everything related to blockchain in combination to the current financial system. Alongside with that, he’s also almost finished his Economics bachelors degree at university.


Ukraine to Block Crypto Wallets for Illicit Funds Finance Minister Says

Ukraine to Block Crypto Wallets for Illicit Funds, Finance Minister Says

Ukrainian authorities will be able to “block crypto wallets” in order to seize illegally obtained assets,

a notice on the country’s Ministry of Finance says. Oksana Markarova, Ukraine’s Finance Minister, reportedly said that the State Financial Monitoring Service of Ukraine (SFMS) will be the responsible authority for tracking the sources of origin of the funds on citizens’ crypto wallets.

Authorities use an analytical product scanning for the crypto funds’ origins and uses

As part of the regulatory policy, the SFMS will be able to not only find out the origin of crypto, but also detect how those funds have been spent, Markarova said in a Jan. 23 report placed on the official website of Ukraine’s Finance Ministry. Markarova, who has been serving as Ukraine’s Finance Minister since late 2018, initially told the news in an interview with local business publication The text of the report on Ukraine’s Finance Ministry website is basically a copy of the original report on Specifically, the SCFM claims to have access to an “analytical product” that purportedly allows investigators to look at the origins of crypto assets as well as their uses. According to Markarova, there have been a number of “successful cases” of investigations via the service.

Blocking crypto wallets is possible as a “result of complex investigations”

Markarova elaborated that halting crypto transactions is impossible, while blocking wallets is

possible through private keys:

“It is impossible to stop operations now, but it is possible to block crypto wallets and remove illegally obtained crypto assets. This can be done by gaining access to the crypto's private keys as a result of complex investigations.”

Cointelegraph asked the SCFM about their capabilities in blocking crypto wallets of Ukrainians but did not receive an immediate response. This story will be updated should they respond.

Action is part of the AML regulation approved by the Ukrainian government in late 2019

According to the statement, the new responsibility of the SCFM will be part of a new crypto-related law that was approved by the Ukranian government in December 2019. On Dec. 6, the Verkhovna Rada, the parliament of Ukraine, published a final version of a money laundering law that will handle virtual assets and virtual asset service providers per guidelines of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). The document says that cryptocurrency transactions are among operations that have to be monitored by relevant authorities. As part of the new law, all crypto transactions up to 30,000 Ukrainian hryvnia ($1,300), will reportedly have to be accompanied with Know Your Customer identification and information on the nature of the business relationship between the payer and payee. Additionally, the new law will reportedly come into force on April 24, 2020.

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Helen Partz

Helen is passionate about learning languages, cultures and the Internet. She has years of experience working at international online advertising projects. Growing interested in Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in late 2017, she joined Cointelegraph as a writer.


Ethereum Ice Age May Be Imminent If Miners Withdraw From Network

Ethereum Ice Age May Be Imminent If Miners Withdraw From Network

The Ethereum block difficulty began to grow back in November 2016.

Since then, developers have been constantly forced to carry out hard forks to keep the network up until the transition to a proof-of-stake algorithm takes place. In the lead-up to the Istanbul upgrade, implemented on Dec. 8, the Ethereum team decided again to postpone the explosion of a so-called “difficulty bomb,” which some believe may lead to the onset of an Ice Age. How can this happen and what would be the consequences if the Ethereum network froze?

Difficulty bomb and Ice Age

When creating Ethereum (ETH), the developers initially assumed that it would work on a proof-of-stake consensus algorithm. However, as this idea implementation demanded more time, the network was launched on the more familiar consensus model: proof-of-work. At the same time, the developers prudently introduced a difficulty bomb into Ethereum — i.e., a mechanism that is supposed to gradually make the process of generating new blocks more complicated, which would gradually lead the network toward PoS.

Initially, the bomb was supposed to explode after Ethereum would be ready to work on the new algorithm called Casper, and provoke the so-called Ice Age — a transitional stage during which mining new coins would become difficult and unprofitable. Theoretically, this procedure should force miners to switch to a new chain, instead of maintaining the old one. However, due to the delay in the development of the PoS mechanism, the transition to Ethereum 2.0 is constantly being adjourned. At the same time, the difficulty bomb has been about to explode several times and the Ethereum team has been constantly delaying it by conducting hard forks, so as not to frighten miners supporting the stability of the network ahead of time.

What are the dangers of the Ice Age?

Vitalik Buterin, one of the co-founders of Ethereum, had previously predicted the fall of the network to take place in 2021, as it will become almost frozen due to a difficulty bomb. However, while the events and landmarks in the Ethereum project are developing faster than expected, while the process of the PoS network transition fails to meet the deadline. In April 2019, the ETH network difficulty began to grow again, with the current value of around 2,498 terahash per second (with one TH/s equal to 1 billion hashes per second). What’s more, if the growth trend remains the same, the Ice Age can occur much faster than the appointed date. This can lead to miner withdrawal, reduced scalability and even a network crash.

Withdrawal of miners

The postponement of the Constantinople hard fork to January 2019 led to a drop in the number of ETH mined per day, as the ETH supply saw its value decrease by 35% in just two months. Mining had become more difficult, and as a result, the daily issuance of the cryptocurrency fell from 20,000 ETH in January to 13,000 ETH in March. Now, the daily value comprises 11,872 ETH and continues to decline further. The current situation has already raised concerns among miners. What’s more, the coming months may become critical for the mining industry if the ETH developers and network participants fail to find a compromise. According to Susquehanna, a global trading firm, since November 2018, ETH mining using video cards has reached zero profitability. In less than 1 1/2 years, the average monthly ETH production profit per GPU has fallen from $150 to zero.

The market is affected not only by the increasing block difficulty and competition in the mining equipment industry, but also by the superiority of Bitmain and its new Antminer ASIC miners. Another decisive factor is the price of the second-largest cryptocurrency, which fell around 10 times from the levels seen in December 2017, when it stood at $1,401. The activation of the difficulty bomb could make mining even more unprofitable, which could lead to miners leaving the network and individual pools dominating the market. Even partial withdrawal of miners can jeopardize the security of the Ethereum blockchain, as well as increase the likelihood of a 51% attack — similar to the one that occurred on the Ethereum Classic network.

At the same time, many miners are betting on another potential update called ProgPoW. This upgrade involves replacing ASIC miners with more traditional equipment like the video cards. However, its implementation in the Constantinople update has not yet been planned. Notably, while in the event of the voluntary refusal of miners to support the network, there will still be those who will ensure its operation — but with the full onset of an Ice Age, mining will simply become impossible. Some experts, however, believe that the difficulty bomb mechanism is a necessary procedure designed to ensure the transition to PoS, and it should not scare the miners. For example, Vlad Miller, CEO of blockchain platform Ethereum Express, told Cointelegraph that many miners will still be able to

continue operating:

“The transition of ETH to PoS is not only inevitable, but also an integral step for Ethereum development.” 

Miller went on to add that despite the fact that mining as it is now will become less attractive, in the long run, the change will prove to be worth it because electricity costs will be reduced and the likelihood of a 51% attack will be lower.

He went on to add:

“Neither the Ice Age nor Ethereum 2.0 mean the end for miners. Many of them will switch to mining other coins, such as Zcash or Ethereum Classic. Those who are mining Ether, have nothing to fear in the near future. However, it's important to ensure the mining equipment will be paid back before the transition to PoS is made.”

Poor scalability and network crash

At the same time, an increase in block time leads to a decrease in the Ethereum network’s ability to process data. Nevertheless, the current limitations are set precisely taking into account the block time and can be changed if necessary. The only negative effect may be an increase in the confirmation time of a transaction. While the release of one block in the Bitcoin (BTC) network takes an average of 10 minutes, a time of one minute can be a viable approach for Ethereum, especially if its a temporary measure.

If the hard fork is delayed again, it could negatively affect the network bandwidth and lead to a rise in fees, since the complexity can increase to the level where production of one block will take about two minutes. Now, the Ethereum block production time, on average, is about 15 seconds, with the commission rate stable at half a cent. An exponential increase in ETH mining difficulty will lead to an increase in the extraction time of new coins to prohibitive values. As such, blocks will be generated slower and transaction confirmation time will increase, making the network very slow or even forcing it to stop functioning.

Reducing decentralized projects

The drop in the scalability of the Ethereum network due to a possible approach of the Ice Age could be tragic for decentralized applications. Today, Ethereum is a haven for numerous DApps — from various blockchain games and projects with their own tokens to increasingly popular decentralized finance solutions. However, as the number of DApps grows, the Ethereum network will start to experience more and more problems with transactional throughput. Back in August, Buterin said that the Ethereum blockchain is almost full, which is cause of concern. Eric Conner, a product manager at Gnosis — a firm developing prediction markets applications — told Cointelegraph that DApps might feel the impact of the difficulty bomb, though it wouldn’t be

that critical.

“For dapps really no direct impact but since there are less blocks a day, transaction fees on the network will slowly go up, which means over times dapps would get more expensive to use,” Conner claimed.

Whether Ethereum developers will be able to find a compromise in this situation is not yet clear. The resolution of the issue is further complicated by the possible consequences of the Istanbul hard fork. Some decentralized projects, such as Aragon and Cyber Network, fear that the update will disrupt their smart contracts and increase the cost of operations within the network by 30%.

Delay or remove?

Last week, the Ethereum developer team raised the issue of delaying the difficulty bomb again by proposing a hard fork called Muir Glacier. The discussion was held between not only platform developers, but also with miners and other market participants. Among the possible solutions discussed were both a delay of difficulty bomb mechanism as well as its complete removal. In particular, Ethereum developer Aleksey Akhunov stated that the ratio of risk and profitability from using this mechanism is “not great so far.” At the beginning of the year, Afri Schoedon, a former developer of the Parity Ethereum client, suggested completely abandoning the difficulty bomb and removing this mechanism from the protocol to eliminate the need to constantly

delay its activation:

“I personally don’t want to deal with [the difficulty bomb] anymore. Serenity is not happening this year and most likely not next year. So why bother?”

However, not everyone agrees with this point of view. For example, Marcus Ligi, creator of the Walleth Android wallet,  believes that removing the difficulty bomb will lead to Ethereum network updates being implemented less often and, therefore, miners becoming less incentivized to update their software and equipment. Therefore, network will significantly slow down, and there will also be a risk of boycotting the transition to updated versions of the ETH blockchain, in particular the one in which the PoS algorithm will finally be implemented. However, Conner from Gnosis, for example, opposes the complete removal of the difficulty bomb, referring to possible negative reaction from the community.

When is Muir Glacier expected?

While the Ethereum developers haven’t agreed on a long-term program for working with the difficulty bomb, in the short term, they decided to postpone this mechanism for a couple of years. James Hancock, the coordinator of Muir Glacier, said that the hard fork would push the bomb "as far as is reasonable.'' This will give developers time to understand whether it’s necessary to modify the Ice Age mechanism so that its behavior becomes predictable or else to completely remove it. According to Tim Beiko, product manager at blockchain solutions firm PegaSys, the hard fork will be launched at block number 9.2 million, which will tentatively be generated on Jan. 6, 2020. If Muir Glacier succeeds, it will freeze the bomb until after another 4 million blocks, which means that Ethereum would not be threatened by the prospect of an Ice Age for the next couple of years.

Conner expressed his expectations to Cointelegraph:

“There won’t be much impact felt before block 9.2mn. The worst we’ll see is maybe 18 second block times which isn’t enough to cause issue.”

Hudson Jameson, a core developer liaison at the Ethereum Foundation, shared the same opinion, adding that Ethereum users and miners should know that there are no critical threats posed by the difficulty bomb and that all it does is increase the block times.

He told Cointelegraph:

“While annoying for sure, it is not critical and will be quickly remedied in Muir Glacier in January. We have always delayed the difficulty bomb in the past and plan to again in January with the Muir Glacier network upgrade. There will be a long delay built into the next difficulty bomb delay code. We are also discussing different options for how to handle the difficulty bomb post-Muir Glacier.”

Article Produced By
Julia Magas

Julia is a researcher/journalist who covers the latest trends in finance and technology. Since 2013, she has been researching the cryptocurrency market and coordinating international conferences. Julia’s works are featured by popular fintech magazines, including Investing, SeekingAlpha and Bitcoinist, where she interviewed representatives from MIT, Indeed, Ethereum and more. She's trading some stocks and digital currencies for experimental purposes and hunting for the most interesting, cutting-edge technologies' use cases in investing and finance.


Crypto Profits Not Taxable in South KoreaGovernment Confirms

Crypto Profits Not Taxable in South Korea—Government Confirms

The government of South Korea has made it official that crypto profits are not taxable according to the country’s current tax law. The decision comes only less than a month after the country announced that it would levy taxes on profits derived from crypto assets.

Crypto Profits Not Taxable in South Korea

Through its Ministry of Economy and Finance, which supervises the country’s economic policy, South Korea revealed that profits derived from crypto trading are not subject to taxation according to the current tax law. However, it was quick to note that it’s evaluating taxation trends in other countries across the world to inform appropriate amendments to the existing law. Major Cryptocurrencies (BTC, LTC, ETH, Ripple, Bitcoin SV, Zcash, XMR) And Their Tokens In One Secure Lightwwallet

Currently, South Korea does not levy taxes on all profits derived from financial investments. Consequently, the country cannot impose taxes on profits from investments that are not clearly defined under the tax law. In its current form, the term “cryptocurrency,” or its related synonyms, does not feature anywhere in the tax law. According to clarification made on December 30, 2019, the ministry said: “Profits from individual virtual asset transactions are not listed income and are not taxable.”

Change of Plan

The confirmation, however, seems to be a U-turn from an earlier decision. In earlier December 2019, the Korea Times reported that the government of South Korea planned to start taxing crypto-related gains. According to an unidentified ministry official, the government was having discussions to revise the bill and draw it within the first half of 2020. The ministry is pushing to revise the section of the tax law, which currently exempts crypto assets from taxation. “We are preparing a taxation plan for virtual assets by comprehensively reviewing the taxation of major countries, consistency with accounting standards, and trends in international discussions to prevent money laundering,” the ministry said.

All the same, the government must make some major decisions before the amendment becomes effective. The government has to clearly define cryptocurrency and determine whether crypto profits should fall under capital gains. Besides, there should be proper mechanisms in place to feed the government with trading records from crypto exchanges. Overall, cryptocurrency must acquire a legal status before the government can add it to its legal system. Based on the anonymous feature of cryptocurrencies, it remains a wait-and-see scenario as to whether the National Tax Service (NTS) would be able to get details of every crypto transaction.

Article Produced By
Tony P.

Tony is a writer and a crypto enthusiast. A graduate of creative writing, he synthesizes blockchain and cryptocurrency topics in a way he only can.


Top 10 Countries Where You Can Mine Bitcoin

Top 10 Countries Where You Can Mine Bitcoin

Bitcoin mining is very integral for the Bitcoin ecosystem because it is the mechanism that secures the network.

However, it is an expensive undertaking that requires a cheap location to be economically viable. Miners should set their factories in areas with the lowest investment per Bitcoin mined for them to make profits. Apart from the economics, government regulatory environments also determine the top countries for bitcoin mining. Miners prefer jurisdictions that have a legal and regulatory framework that allows mining.

So, let’s look at the top 10 countries for Bitcoin mining.


Bitcoin mining is an energy-intensive undertaking. The GPU used for mining requires an incredible amount of electricity and cooling them to prevent overheating also involves a lot of power. That is why Kuwait, an oil-rich country in the Gulf, makes it to this list. Although Kuwait is very hot, requiring electricity to cool GPUs, it provides cheap energy that offsets the cost of cooling GPUs. The cost of mining Bitcoin in the country, according to Elite Fixtures data, is roughly $1,983, making it among the cheapest countries to mine Bitcoin.


Iceland, a Nordic country, seems to have everything favorable for mining: a cold climate, affordable electricity, and an advantageous regulatory environment. Because of this, the country has become a hub for cryptocurrency miners. Iceland has a significant number of natural resources that it uses to create energy. The country produces sustainable electricity from a mixture of geothermal and hydroelectric power, which it provides to its citizens cheaply. Importantly, despite the huge spike in electricity consumption, the government allows the miners to use energy from the grid for mining. The cold climate is another benefit for miners, as it provides air conditioning to minimize the cost of electricity. The cost of mining Bitcoin on the island currently stands at around $4,746 per coin.


This is a relatively small country located in Eastern Europe. The nation, reputed for being tech-savvy, also joins the favorite countries for bitcoin mining. It has a friendly legal environment and tax rate that favors miners. Additionally, its relatively cheap electricity within the region has endeared it to miners. Importantly, the cold winters in the country reduce the demand for air conditioning, lowering the overall cost of Bitcoin mining. However, because of the high cost of doing business, the price of mining Bitcoin is $5,551 per coin.


The Eastern European country is very rich in natural gas and hydroelectric power. Additionally, the country has only tapped a quarter of its energy resources thus far. With a lot of electricity, the cost of power is low, making it among the best destinations for miners. Apart from electricity costs, Georgia’s regulatory environment favors cryptocurrency. Its attractive tax regime supports cryptocurrency miners. Specifically, the law doesn’t recognize mining as a taxable activity, meaning that meager taxes are levied on miners if any. So, if you were to mine Bitcoin in Georgia, you’ll do it tax-free. The cost of mining a Bitcoin in the country is around $3,316 a BTC.


The North American country is a preferred destination for miners because it has some of the world’s largest hydroelectric dams. The dams provide electricity, which is sold at low rates that are attractive to miners. When it comes to the regulatory climate for cryptocurrencies, Canada offers a very promising environment. Additionally, the cold climate in Canada is hugely advantageous to miners because of the cooling costs savings. Even if the country is very strict with ICOs, it allows cryptocurrency mining. Depending on which part of the country you locate your mining factory, expect the cost of mining Bitcoin to be within the $3,965 per BTC. 

United States

The actual cost of mining Bitcoin varies across states in the United States. On average, the cost of mining is $4,785. Until recently, New York State was one of the cheapest places and was a mining hub because it had the lowest electricity cost. However, in 2018, the state government halted the addition of more miners to the grid. But later, the state government ruled that power providers could impose higher tariffs for miners. Apart from Now York, Louisiana provides the cheapest rates at an average cost of $3,224 per BTC. Other notable more affordable locations in the US are Tennessee, Idaho, Arkansas and Washington. Also, the US is very receptive to cryptocurrencies, and mining is mostly unregulated, giving miners a favorable environment in different states.


If you are looking for the cheapest place to mine Bitcoin, then Venezuela is the place to set up the shop. There, you can mine at $531 per Bitcoin because the nation is an oil exporter, and it also subsidies electricity. Despite the cheap cost of mining Bitcoin in Venezuela, the country is facing a severe economic crisis and massive corruption that may dissuade miners from setting shop. Moreover, while Bitcoin is technically legal, the practice is highly restricted. Finally, the country is experiencing a political crisis that has led to hyperinflation. On the flip side, inflation has brought about a large-scale adoption of Bitcoin. So, if you can bear with hyperinflation, food shortages, and power-outages, Venezuela is the best place to mine Bitcoin.


Russia is a country endowed with energy from natural sources. The cost of mining Bitcoin is estimated at $4,675. It is slowly positioning itself as a crypto-friendly country so that it can benefit from the fast-growing blockchain industry. It plans to provide miners with subsidized energy from its power grid. Also, the country has an advantageous regulatory climate on cryptocurrency. Legislators are currently considering enacting a cryptocurrency bill, which will most likely not affect mining adversely. Moreover, the country has a cold climate that is favorable for mining.


China is in the list of countries that mine Bitcoins across the world. It is home to top mining firms, such as F2pool, BTC, AntPool, and BW. These companies are estimated to control around 60% of mining power. Electricity in the country is relatively cheap, and this has made miners get a considerable percentage of hash power. The cost of mining Bitcoin in China is $3,172. Although the Chinese government has not been receptive to ICOs and exchanges, authorities allow cryptocurrency mining. In fact, in places such as Sichuan, mining firms access their electricity from the State grid, even under contractual agreements. Additionally, China is home to the leading mining hardware manufacturers, such as Bitman.


Myanmar, located in the Far East, is increasingly becoming a hotbed of miners. Actually, for Chinese miners, Myanmar is their preferred destination because it has relatively cheap power. Moreover, the rumors and threats of crackdowns on mining in neighboring China have made relocation to Myanmar the only option. It costs $1,983 to mine one Bitcoin in Myanmar.


Bitcoin mining can be a very profitable venture, especially if it is done in favorable countries. While miners can set up their operations anywhere across the globe, these ten countries provide a mix of economic, regulatory, and climatic considerations that earn them a slot in the top countries to mine Bitcoin.

Article Produced By
Lavinia C.


UK Offers 130K for Software to Trace Crypto Transactions

UK Offers $130K for Software to Trace Crypto Transactions

Tax authorities in the UK are seeking bids for software that will track cryptocurrency transactions linked to illicit activities.

One thing that authorities do when dealing with crime is to follow the money. Nothing helps ensure catching criminals and bringing them to justice than following a trail of financial transactions. Cryptocurrency offers a troubling wrinkle to authorities due to its somewhat anonymous nature. Tax authorities in the UK are seeking to remedy this situation by offering developers US$130,000 to create software that will track and trace cryptocurrency transactions, particularly those transactions that are of an illicit nature.

Crypto Anarchy in the UK

The HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) department have posted a listing seeking applicants for this tracking endeavor. The agency is looking for software that will track and trace Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, Ripple, Bitcoin Cash, Tether, and Litecoin. Of particular interest to the HMRC are privacy coins, such as Monero, Dash, and Zcash. The goal is to link the cryptocurrency transactions with the individuals making them. The HMRC is undertaking this route in order to combat those evading paying the proper taxes on their cryptocurrency gains as well as individuals using service providers that offer mixing, dark market, and gambling services.

The proposal by the HMRC states:

Crypto assets, such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, provide a means to transfer value between interacting parties. Also known as virtual and crypto currencies, these services are increasingly used for a range of purposes, from international money transfers, sales of digital services, paying staff, and tax evasion and money laundering.

Deadline Looming

The submission deadline for this proposal by the UK tax agency is January 31, 2020. Evaluation of the submissions will take place from January 30 through February 2, with moderation occurring on February 2. The 12-month contract will begin on February 17, 2020. If there is one thing that central governments hate, it is not getting the total amount of taxes they feel it is owed. As cryptocurrency continues to gain mainstream acceptance, it should be expected that governmental tax agencies will want to keep tabs on how much people make or lose on virtual currencies. The IRS in the United States already went down this road when it got account information from Coinbase back in 2018. Last year, the IRS used the information gained to send out letters to thousands of crypto traders, informing them that they may (or do) owe taxes.Images courtesy of Pixabay.

Article Produced By
Jeff Francis

A few years back, Jeff began hearing about Bitcoin and the rise of other cryptocurrencies. A proponent of allowing people to take economic power into their own hands, he has enthusiastically supported cryptocurrencies and the many benefits of blockchain technology. This interest propelled him to becoming a writer for, and later editor of, several crypto-focused websites. His goal with BitcoinerX is to provide timely news and analysis in an entertaining manner.


Elon Musk Says Cryptocurrency Could Replace Cash

Elon Musk Says Cryptocurrency Could Replace Cash

Tesla CEO Elon Musk said on a podcast that cryptocurrency could replace cash but that he is “neither here nor there on Bitcoin.

It’s always fascinating to see the opinions of successful entrepreneurs in regards to Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. For example, NBA Mavericks owner and Shark Tank member Mark Cuban prefers gold to Bitcoin. Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, has a more favorable view of virtual currencies. He recently said on the Third Row Tesla Podcast that he believes cryptocurrencies could replace cash.

‘Neither Here nor There’

The subject of Bitcoin was raised during the podcast. Elon Musk was asked why he loves code but is not bullish on Bitcoin. His reply was that he was “neither here nor there” on Bitcoin. However, he did admit that the whitepaper by Satoshi Nakamoto was “pretty clever.” Musk went on to say that he does envision cryptocurrency becoming “effectively a replacement for cash.” This does not mean that he sees Bitcoin being all-conquering. Instead, he thinks Bitcoin will not become a primary financial database due to its utility being limited.

As for cash, Musk brings up the fact that it is becoming increasingly harder to use cash in everyday life. He points out that there are businesses that no longer accept cash payments. (It should be pointed out that businesses in the United States are obligated to accept fiat to settle debts, but the reality is that there are lots of establishments that now only accept debit and credit card payments.)

Elon Musk on Illegality

The primary concern that the Tesla CEO sees with cryptocurrency is it being used for illegal transactions. He states:

This sort of gets the crypto people angry, but there are transactions that are not within the balance of the law … and there are, obviously, many laws in different countries. And, normally, cash is used for these transactions. But, in order for illegal transactions to occur, cash must also be used for legal transactions. You need an illegal-to-legal bridge. That’s where crypto comes in.

Musk does add that he is not being judgmental of cryptocurrency. He believes that many things that are deemed illegal by governments should not be. While not being bullish on Bitcoin, it is interesting that Elon Musk is taking cryptocurrency seriously. Of course, he has no need to dabble in investing in crypto as he is currently worth just over US$31 billion. At the time of writing, Bitcoin is currently trading at $8,323, a drop of 3.10% over the last 24 hours.

Article Produced By
Jeff Francis


Bitcoin Price Hits Bottom Says Peter Brandt

Bitcoin Price Hits Bottom Says Peter Brandt

All the BTC investors who were waiting for the price dip to even $6000 have missed their opportunity says a veteran trader Peter Brandt.

All the BTC investors who were waiting for the price dip to even $6000 have missed their opportunity says a veteran trader Peter Brandt.
As per a recent discussion on the 17th of Jan Stalwart said that the pairs like BTC/USD have already hit their bars. Brandt gave the conclusion that all the weak hands are out of the market now only the stronger hands are surviving in the market. With this, he continued that all now wanted a sit back and have a break at $6,000 and $5,000 but now they have missed the bottom. Being a long-time Bitcoin advocate, he shared his sentiments of him being changed in late 2019 that there remains a chance of Bitcoin to go in the lower lowes in 2020 and for this, he thanked a novice investors to whom he described as “cryptocultists”

Back in early 2018, just a month after Bitcoin reached an all-time high $20,000, Brandt already warned that the market won’t be going any higher and it would likely to retract and hit local lows as $3,100 which was 84.5% lower that year. Brandt also has some suggestions for those who are interested in what Bitcoin offers, he advised them to have at least 10-20% of the ownership of the capital that they could commit to the Currency on a bigger perspective. As of now, Bitcoin has already sealed monthly gains of around 35% having progress of 25% alone in 2020. While the latest statistics and data suggest that the Bitcoin extends a lot more beyond the customer’s need.

Article Produced By
Harsh Sangwan


Blockchain Solutions To Improve Government Schools Says Indian IT Minister

Blockchain Solutions To Improve Government Schools Says Indian IT Minister

Recently the Indian Telecoms and IT Minister,

Ravi Shankar Prasad has tasked the NIC (National Informatics Centre) with the development of a Blockchain-Based solution for a sheer cause of improving the quality of the government schools. As per the reports on the 20th of Jan by the Press Trust of India, the minister has already made the request at the Blockchain Technology Excellence that has been set up in Bengaluru on the 18th of Jan. Since the blockchain technology has been challenged to transform education taking further action on this the NIC and local state authorities have opened their doors for startups to work under certain predefined norms.

While adding further to this Ravi Shankar Prasad added:

“I am very keen on how we can leverage blockchain in primary education. In fact today I am going to give you a task, NIC team. Can you think of a good application of blockchain technology for improving the quality of government schools all over the country?”

Tho he agreed that both private and government schools are good but he believed that leveraging the blockchain technology could be a transformational change in the field of education. The startups, as usual, would play the key role, as India alone is home to around 26,000 start-ups, having 9,000 alone in the tech sector, therefore Prasad urged NIC to develop such a mechanism so as to include these start-ups in its technology space since NIC has turned out to be a good patron of the startup movement. Although the Indian authorities are getting behind in the field of blockchain technologies as the cryptocurrency has had a bumpier ride in the country.Harsh Sangwan is a Crypto enthusiastic, Bitmex Trader, Blogger and Youtuber. Love to write about market conditions and forecasts.

Article Produced By
Harsh Sangwan


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