Retail cryptocurrency mining in Thailand has apparently received a boost due to the capitulation of Chinese miners triggered by the country’s new crypto mega ban enforced in September.
Thai entrepreneurs and cryptocurrency businesses have been increasingly capitalizing on Chinese miners getting rid of their crypto mining machines, Al Jazeera reported Wednesday.
“The moment China banned crypto, we were ecstatic,” one Thai-based Bitcoin (BTC) enthusiast turned miner said.
The miner, who asked to remain anonymous, claimed to have set up a small solar-powered crypto mining unit for about $30,000. “I made it all back in three months,” he said.
Another industry entrepreneur, Pongsakorn Tongtaveenan, started a reseller business for crypto mining devices in Thailand, reportedly selling hundreds of Chinese application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) miners to small local investors.
According to Pongsakorn, the price of ASICs, like the Bitmain Antminer SJ19 Pro, collapsed 30% due to the exit of Chinese miners before returning to normal amid the growing local demand.
Pongsakorn believes that the increasing popularity of retail crypto mining in Thailand is triggered by people looking for a stable income during the pandemic as well as investors getting more optimistic about the future of digital assets.
“Bitcoin is the gold of the digital world. But a mining rig is like gold mining stocks — you’re paid dividends according to the gold price,” he said.
Thailand is not the only country whose crypto mining development has benefited from China’s crypto miners' exit. Countries like the United States, Kazakhstan and Russia have seen a massive influx of new crypto mining operations due to the Chinese crypto crackdown.
The growing popularity of crypto mining in Thailand comes in line with the booming local cryptocurrency adoption, with the turnover at several local crypto exchanges surging to $6.6 million in November 2021 from just $538 million last year.
The institutional demand for crypto in Thailand has been notably growing as well. In early November, Thailand’s oldest bank, Siam Commercial Bank, paid $537 million to buy a 51% stake in BitKub, Thailand’s biggest crypto exchange.