Vietnam Central Bank Backs Proposed Import Ban On Crypto Mining Equipment

News, Regulation | July 19, 2018 By:

The State Bank of Vietnam (SBV), the central bank of the country, has agreed to suspend imports of cryptocurrency mining equipment in order to improve the management of crypto transactions in the country.

Earlier this year, the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) and the Ministry of Finance (MoF) proposed a temporary blanket ban on the importation of crypto mining rigs. At the time, the MoF said that since cryptocurrency mining machines are not on the list of goods banned from importation, enterprises are easily allowed to complete the import procedures. It added that the use of crypto mining equipment in the country made it difficult for authorities to enforce the current restrictions on cryptocurrencies.

Last month, the General Department of Vietnam Customs reported that the country imported more than 6,300 application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) devices, which are used to mine cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and ethereum, in the first four months of this year. Last year, more than 9,300 mining rigs were imported into Vietnam, most of which went to Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi capital.

In August 2017, Vietnam Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc asked the central bank, the MoF, and the Ministry of Public Safety to draw up a legal framework for cryptocurrencies. In October, the central bank declared that bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are not considered legal payment methods. The law came into effect earlier this year with the added threat of criminally prosecuting adopters who use cryptocurrency for payment, facing fines up to $9,000.