Iran to lift Bitcoin mining ban in September
Iran will once again allow Bitcoin and crypto miners to operate in the country from the last week of September.
According to a report by Iran’s Financial Tribune, Tavanir, the country’s power generation organization, made the decision known earlier in August.
As previously reported by Cointelegraph, Iran’s government banned Bitcoin (BTC) and crypto mining operations back in May. At the time, the decision was reportedly made to prevent miners from overburdening the grid during the hot summer months.
Indeed, Bitcoin miners have been blamed for incessant blackouts and power shortages in Iran. Such has been the extent of the problem that Iran reportedly paused electricity exports to neighboring Afghanistan.
In April, Chinese investors restarted the country’s largest Bitcoin mining center after being out of service for four months due to complaints about excessive electricity consumption.
However, illegal crypto mining operations are reportedly the reason for the significant strain on the electricity supply. As such, only authorized miners will be cleared to resume operations once the moratorium lifts in September.
Back in June, the country’s trade ministry awarded 30 crypto mining licenses as authorities in Iran continue to push for regulated cryptocurrency mining operations.
Also in June, the police in Tehran reportedly confiscated over 7,000 rigs from illegal mining operations across the city.
Iran began legalizing Bitcoin mining in 2020 with over 1,000 licenses issued in January 2020. However, the government appears keen to localize its crypto mining sector with parliament even considering a bill to ban the use of “foreign-mined” cryptocurrencies for payments in the country.
The government expects Bitcoin and crypto mining to become a significant economic activity in the country with a $1 billion revenue forecast predicted back in May. However, the summer ban might serve to make the target unattainable, for 2021 at least.
Iran’s crypto acceptance policy might also be set for a significant increase in scope with the country’s tax agency recently calling for a legal framework for crypto trading activities.