Iranian authorities are tightening their grip on illegal crypto mining in the country in response to the failing power challenges that the nation is facing.
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As reported by the Tehran Times, subsidised energy for crypto mining is now prohibited, and the Iranian government will pass new regulations to increase the penalties for illegal cryptocurrency mining using subsidised electricity.
The Distribution and Transmission Company of Iran, also called Tanavir, revealed through its representative Mohammad Khodadadi Bohlouli that the new rules will see offenders pay more fines moving forward. Khodadadi also noted that frequent offenders would likely be jailed for 3 to 5 years, a move that is set to serve as a deterrent to others.
“Any use of subsidised electricity, intended for households, industrial, agricultural and commercial subscribers, for mining cryptocurrency is prohibited,” Khodadadi said.
Iran is a known hub for crypto mining in the Middle Eastern region as the country enjoys a cheaper cost of electricity which attract a lot of miners. The sovereign nation designated crypto mining as an industrial activity, and despite the cheap electricity source, miners were placed on a different payment tariff from what commercial subscribers pay.
The new regulations are being sponsored as the interruption to the national grid is increasing per crypto miners connecting to commercial energy sources. In times past, Iran has been overburdened by miners as those making their exodus from China after the government banned Proof-of-Work (PoW) mining activities.
A few years back, the Iranian government showed how bullish it is on Bitcoin mining by approving as many as 1,000 licenses to companies that want to mine cryptocurrencies.
While the country is posing to be welcoming to miners, its current power challenges make it make a definitive u-turn on some of its policies. While Iran is not banning mining outrightly, it is boosting its incentive to anyone who exposes the activities of illegal crypto miners in the nation.
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