The Iranian government is trying to detect and seize any illegal bitcoin mining equipment, as well as impose fines on their operators. This move comes in response to increasing electricity consumption.
According to Bloomberg, the Ministry of Information has assisted local authorities in finding and confiscating mining facilities that were operating without the required permit.
The above information comes from the semi-official Iranian Students ’News Agency, citing in turn Gholamali Rakhshani Mehr, head of the public electricity distribution network Tavanir.
Gholamali Rakhshani Mehr recalls that cryptocurrency mining in Iran is very attractive due to electricity prices. In turn, however, it is responsible for very serious energy shortages, resulting in frequent interruptions of street lighting or energy supply in office buildings.
The informants are also involved in this story and are rewarded for their noble services with 200 million riyals, i.e. $873 which represents 7.5 basic monthly salaries.
So far, however, hundreds of mining facilities have been confiscated this year, hidden in abandoned factories, warehouses and homes.
The operation of mining facilities in Iran started on a large scale, after the government approval given in 2019. But as it turned out, many facilities use energy intended for domestic use.
According to the Tehran Times, the government is going to impose heavy fines on the managers of such facilities.
Energy Ministry spokesman Mostafa Rajabi Mashhadi said the mining companies, as well as the individuals involved, would be required to repair the damage to the country’s electricity grid.
At the same time, the head of the Iranian Thermal Plant Holding Company is taking a somewhat more positive stance:
“The necessary equipment has been installed at the three power plants Ramin, Neka and Shahid Montazeri. According to the legislation and regulations announced by the cabinet and the Ministry of Energy, we are allowed to allocate some capacity of our stations for cryptocurrency mining.”
Officials in the country agreed with the proposal, but revealed that these organisations would not benefit from Iranian subsidies for their fuel supply.