Biden's Directive: Chinese-Backed Crypto Mining Firm Barred from Land Ownership Near Wyoming Missile Base

Biden’s Directive: Chinese-Backed Crypto Mining Firm Barred from Land Ownership Near Wyoming Missile Base

Author: Chad Smith | Published On: June 24, 2024

President Joe Biden issued an order on Monday, effectively blocking a Chinese-backed cryptocurrency mining firm from owning land near a Wyoming nuclear missile base, citing its proximity as a national security risk.

The order mandates the divestment of property currently operated as a crypto mining facility near the Francis E. Warren Air Force Base. MineOne Partners Ltd., a firm partly backed by Chinese nationals, and its affiliates must remove certain equipment from the site.

This development coincides with the imminent announcement of significant tariffs by the U.S. on electric vehicles, semiconductors, solar equipment, and medical supplies imported from China. Biden and his presumptive Republican challenger, former President Donald Trump, have emphasized their resolve to take a tough stance on China, highlighting its status as the world’s second-largest economy and an emerging geopolitical rival.

The Monday divestment order was coordinated with the U.S. Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), a powerful government committee responsible for investigating corporate deals for national security concerns. This committee possesses the authority to compel companies to alter ownership structures or divest entirely from the U.S.

In 2018, a law granted CFIUS the jurisdiction to review real estate transactions near sensitive sites across the U.S., including the F.E. Warren Air Force Base. MineOne had acquired the land within a mile of the base in Cheyenne in 2022, but according to CFIUS, the purchase was not reported to the committee as required until after a public tip was received.

The order did not elaborate on the specific national security concerns. Still, it stated that there were issues related to “specialized and foreign-sourced equipment capable of facilitating surveillance and espionage activities” posing a “significant national security risk.”

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, who chairs CFIUS, emphasized the committee’s role in ensuring that foreign investment does not jeopardize national security, especially concerning transactions involving sensitive U.S. military installations and specialized equipment and technologies.

Comprising members from various departments including State, Justice, Energy, and Commerce, CFIUS investigates national security risks stemming from foreign investments in American firms.

CFIUS has directed the sale of the property within 120 days and mandated the removal of all structures and equipment from the site within 90 days.

Author: Chad Smith
Chad Smith is a cryptocurrency enthusiast and blockchain advocate with a knack for simplifying complex concepts. With a clear, insightful writing style, Chad's articles cater to both beginners and experienced enthusiasts alike. Beyond cryptocurrency, he stays abreast of developments in technology, finance, and social impact.

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