The KPK province of Pakistan has plans to construct 2 hydro-powered plants that are to pilot mining farms for the country. The entire purpose of doing so is to hopefully capitalize on the extremely popular cryptocurrency craze that has really taken the world by storm as of late.
On Jan 11, 2021, The KP government advisor on information technology Ziaullah Khan Bangash told ARY News that his government has approved the cryptocurrency and they will be funding the cryptocurrency mining plants.
To this end, the KPK government has decided to approve funds for the construction of these aforementioned mining plants, and this decision had arrived shortly after the province had elected to grant NOCs (No Objection Certificates) to both individuals as well as businesses who may be interested in cryptocurrency.
‘Crypto Advisory Committee’ Formed
In an effort to further develop the local cryptocurrency industry, an advisory committee had also been formed in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. The committee had its initial meeting on March 17th of this year, and much had been discussed and subsequently decided.
Ziaullah Bangash, the Chief Minister of Science & Information Technology, had now famously stated that it really is only our government that is not fully involved in cryptocurrency, mining, and blockchain technology, as the rest of our country has already been taking full advantage of DeFi (decentralized finance) for a while now and state bank also seems favourable. It is for this reason that mining had finally been approved in KPK as the government had little choice but to acknowledge that cryptocurrency is indeed here to stay, mirroring the reaction that the United States administration had when their ‘ignore it and it will go away’ approach didn’t seem to work and regulators had no choice but to acknowledge cryptocurrencies as more than just a ‘fringe asset’.
Bangash was present at the time of the meeting, and during it he exclaimed that various experts and relevant stakeholders will be contacted for advice on how to proceed with the mining efforts and initiative.
How to Get Crypto Mining NOC in KPK
As far as NOCs are concerned, the government will be given full control of the mining efforts and will only grant the certificates to businesses and individuals once the legal requirements have been appropriately satisfied, after which nearly all domestic as well as foreign investors shall be able to safely invest.
Moreover, it had also been declared that sub-committees shall be formed in an effort to deal with numerous crypto and mining related issues that are sure to arise. To this end, technical, coordination and blockchain committees had all been formed. These sub-committees primarily exist to help the main committee in terms of technical support.
Still a long way to go as NOC requirements remain ambiguous
The resolution to legalise cryptocurrency and its related mining activities in Pakistan had been passed by the KP Assembly back in December of last year. Not only is this the first ever legislative assembly to make such a decision, but the passing of the NOCs by the KPK government is sure to help out as well. It should be mentioned however that it is still not completely clear as to what the minute details would be in regards to obtaining an NOC, and many are left wondering if they actually qualify, with rumours going around that the MoITT (Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunication) may need to be involved. Exact details and procedure of obtaining the Cryptocurrency mining NOC is not currently available, and our efforts to get in touch with MoITT led us with no answers aswell. This article will be updated when any new development.
Furthermore, as the country is known for its energy crises, there is also the ethical ambiguity that comes with utilizing so much energy for mining, as one could make the claim that this could be put to better use in other socio-economic sectors instead. Still, this is a step in the right direction.
At last, cryptocurrency in Pakistan is finally getting that push that it so desperately needs. The success by the KPK government should not be underestimated nor should it be used as an example to convince others that cryptocurrency is easy and risk free. As many would already be aware, the cryptocurrency space is one filled with volatility and unpredictability, and one can find numerous examples of individuals, families, firms, businesses and companies losing much more than what they gained. Unfortunately, in our country, many would want to take the shortcut and participate in ‘get rich quick’ schemes, which often results in illicit transactions and illegal activities and just a general sense of loss for everyone involved. Nevertheless, Pakistan is certainly taking steps to become more involved in the world of DeFi and time will only tell how well our government’s efforts go in the near future.
Keywords: KPK, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Cryptocurrency, Mining, NOC, Advisory Committee, Government