Iran is regulating crypto miners after a new licensing regime has been introduced by the country’s government.
According to an official representative from the Iranian ICT Guild Organization (IIG), which is a body that represents Iran’s computing sector, the Ministry of Industries, Mining and Trade has given more than 1,000 licenses to crypto miners.
The New Regulations Failed to Attract Foreign Investments
Amir Hossein Saeedi Naeini, also an IIG representatives, said that even though the cryptocurrency mining operations are now regulated in the country, this hasn’t attracted too many foreign investments. These are exactly his words, from local media reports:
“Our studies show that the crypto mining industry has the potential to add $8.5 billion to the economy. [But] most potential investors have left for neighboring countries, because they offer incentives for crypto miners.”
Mining Operators Attracted to Iran
The mining industry in Iran has evolved greatly over the past few years, seeing operators are very attracted to the country’s state-subsidized tariffs on electricity. There are thousands of members operating on the most popular Iranian mining channels. Besides, last year, the government of Iran came with new legislation for crypto mining to be recognized as a legitimate business. The draft proposal says operators need to submit details about their mining activity in order to receive a license that they need to renew every year.
Licensing Regime for Big Operators Only
The Minister of Industry, Mine and Trade approved the licensing regime in the summer of 2019. The licenses are being given only to mining farms that use over 30 kilowatts of electricity, meaning small household operators can’t get one. Before licensing, mining was conducted in fear because the non-compliance penalties were very high. Those who were caught not complying had to face big fines and their equipment was confiscated, not to mention some of them even ended up in jail. In June 2019, over 1,000 mining rigs have been confiscated from only 2 operators.