Iran’s President Demands New National Strategy in Crypto Mining
Image Credit: Newsweek
  • The Iranian president has delegated officials from the central bank and ministries of energy, communications, and information technology to develop plans for a national cryptocurrency strategy.
  • Iran also announced earlier this week to include digital assets in its currency regulations and in its enforcement against currency smuggling.
  • Iran has been increasingly using crypto after US President’s sanctions on the country.

It’s no secret that countries worldwide are slowly starting to weigh the pros and cons of cryptocurrencies. While digital asset supporters in the likes of Malta and Japan have been vocal of their stance, many economies are dabbling between the risks involved and the potential benefits. 

Iran has been fiddling with the idea of cryptocurrencies. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has instructed the government to come up with a new national approach and a well-researched and comprehensive plan for the emerging cryptocurrency industry, as reported by the local news outlet ArzDigital

Calling for a renewed strategy including regulations and mining revenue, Rouhani briefed officials from the Central Bank of Iran (CBI), the Department of Energy, and the ministries of Information and Communications Technology during the 137th session of Iran’s economic coordination headquarters.

This news comes after the Iranian parliament tightened its regulation with respect to cryptocurrencies. It proposed to extend its foreign exchange and currency smuggling regulation to crypto. Furthermore, the law would require crypto exchanges to register with the Central Bank of Iran to operate in the country. The clampdown on cryptocurrencies might have been to ensure money does not slip away from the government’s control.

Iran’s strong position with respect to crypto 

It was only in July 2019 that the Iranian government officially began recognizing the cryptocurrency industry as a legit one. It was then that the government started issuing mining licenses making it easier for companies wanting to mine or trade digital assets. 

A report released in January said that Iran had already issued over 1,000 such licenses in the first six months. In fact, earlier this month Turkish company iMiner boasting of more than 6,000 mining devices got the green light to establish its facility in the country. 

In addition, in September 2019, the Iranian National Tax Administration (INTA) said that cryptocurrency miners in Iran would be eligible for receiving tax exemptions if “they repatriate their overseas earnings,” – or in simple words bring their foreign earnings back into Iran – INTA said.

The boost to the crypto sector In Iran comes at a time when Iranians have turned to digital assets with the aim to dodge the damage wreaked by US sanctions which US President Donald Trump placed. Sanctions were placed on Iran’s energy, shipping, and financial sectors which barred US companies to do any deals with the country. 

To counter this issue, Iran’s commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Saeed Muhammad suggested using cryptocurrencies as a shield against US sanctions.

“We are demanding the creation of a more sophisticated mechanism to bypass sanctions. To circumvent sanctions, we must develop solutions such as the exchange of products and the use of cryptocurrencies with our partnerships,” Muhammad said at the time.