Undeclared Bitcon Miners Detained By China Customs
January 10 Hangzhou- According to Sohu, Hangzhou Customs seized 3 sets of bitcoin miner that were smuggled in by foreign tourists at the Yiwu aviation port. This is the first time that Hangzhou Customs seized such machines. There are several other cases that undeclared bitcoin miners were detained by China customs in 2017. With the tightening regulations on bitcoin mining business, cross-border trade of cryptocurrency mining machines may see a rising trend.
On December 16, 2017, a foreign visitor landed in Yiwu airport, carrying a big suitcase. The customs officers inspected his luggage and found three units of electronic equipment similar to the computer case. After further examination, these machines are confirmed as the bitcoin miners. Hanghzou Custom has detained the 3 bitcoin miners as they are valuable items and beyond the reasonable scope of “personal usage”. The news was also aired on CCTV.
In fact, this is not the first time that China custom found smuggling of bitcoin miners.
On 11 October, two cargo vehicles were detained by Shenzhen Customs. The cargo weigh 3 tons, containing 262 bitcoin miners and other undeclared electronic items.
On 10 November, a female tourist from Southeastern Asian Countries was stopped by Shenzhen Customs officers. The luggage she carried had 7 bitcoin miners inside. These machines were detained as well.
After the ICO ban in last September, bitcoin mining business is being tightened in China and the owners are seeking other solution. After years of development, many bitcoin mining operators has accumulated sufficient funds and experience to deploy business outside China. Malaysia, Burma, Enropean countries, Canada and USA are the potential sites for hosing large-scale mining facilities. However, there are several issues to be resolved.
First the exchange rate could be a problem. Mining sites need to pay power bill in local currencies. Unstable exchange rate between bitcoin and local fiats could lead to serious problem if bitcoin price dropped a lot. Meanwhile, there might not be sufficient depth to trade in local exchanges provided there is one.
Second issue is the policy stability and compliance. Such problem may not be an issue in developed countries, where legal system is more mature and lasting. But compliance will cost dearly due to the integrity of legal structure. In developing countries, the compliance cost may be less but the shifting of ruling power is another major concern.
At last, the custom declaration and other formalities may pose another unexpected hurdle. So far China is still the center of electronic products due to its full supply chain at a very competitive price. The majority of assembled miners will go through custom declaration to be delivered to the destination.