Inside Iran’s Onslaught on Bitcoin Mining – CoinDesk – CoinDesk

Inside Iran’s Onslaught on Bitcoin Mining – CoinDesk – CoinDesk

Iran is trying to make crypto mining a source of income for the state, while cracking down on miners.

Iran, hit hard by international sanctions, lost revenue supplied by oil exports. Crypto might be a way to get some extra cash, so Iran has been toughening its grip on miners at home in an effort to better control this revenue stream. Since last year, Iran has also opened new opportunities for foreign mining firms.

Iran is a notable player on the bitcoin mining market, and during 2020 it contributed almost 4% of the global bitcoin hashpower, according to research by the University of Cambridge.  

But Iran’s relationship with miners is best described as complicated. 

On the one hand, Iran clearly sees crypto mining as a way to generate income for the state. Iran began requiring miners to register with the country’s Ministry of Industry, Mines and Trade and pay a higher tariff on electricity than retail or industrial users last year. 

But Iran has also blamed bitcoin miners for recent power outages. Just this month, Iranian authorities reportedly shut down 1,620 unregistered mining farms and confiscated 45,000 mining devices

CoinDesk takes a deep dive into Iranian mining.

Lights out

In January, Iran experienced a number