Iranian Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri announced on Monday the country’s cryptocurrency miners will soon have to register their rigs with the government.
- Under the directive, miners will have to disclose their identities, the size of their mining farms and their mining equipment type with the Ministry of Industry, Mines and Trade.
- Miners will have a month to register their equipment, according to the Ministry, which will then publish a list of licensed mining centers.
- Jahangiri’s announcement is the latest in Iran’s cat-and-mouse game with the country’s illegal crypto miners, who smuggle in rigs and are sometimes caught.
- Officials said Monday they want to “eliminate the confusion of cryptocurrency activists” with the new directive. That confusion has largely been of Iran’s own making: conflicting mining policies, tariffs and laws have left miners in a gray zone for years.
- The directive will ultimately give Iran tighter control over its on-the-books miners, though it remains to be seen how much of the underground community will heed the directive. Iranian miners contributed nearly 4% of bitcoin’s hashrate in April.
- The directive did not specify the punishment for failing to register. However, illegal bitcoin miners have faced jail time and steep fines in the past.
The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups.