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Uzbekistan warms up to Bitcoin mining, but there’s a catch


The National Agency of Prospective Projects (NAPP) in the 34-million nation of Uzbekistan enunciated its demands toward the crypto mining operators. It would only allow the companies that use solar energy to mine Bitcoin (BTC) or other cryptocurrencies. 

The normative act on the government page, dated June 24, prescribes the confirmation of “Guidelines on the registration of the crypto assets mining,” and sets the finalization date on July 9. The second article of the document offers an uncompromising wording:

“Mining is being carried out only by the legal entity with the use of electric energy, provided by a solar photovoltaic power plant.”

As a further complication, the miners should own the solar photovoltaic power plant whose energy they will use.

The executive order also obliges any mining operator to obtain a certificate and register in the national registry of crypto mining companies — this procedure demands a brief list of documents and should take no more than 20 days from submitting to the final decision by licensing body. The certificates would be valid one year after the registration.

Related: Go green or die? Bitcoin miners aim for carbon neutrality by mining near data centers

All the currency generated from mining activities would be spared taxation, though the mining farms would face the special tariffs on the consumed energy set by the Uzbekistan government. But the trade operations with mined assets would have to be conducted only on the exchange platforms, that got registration in Uzbekistan. The mining of anonymous cryptocurrencies would be prohibited.

In April 2022, the freshly-restructured NAPP became Uzbekistan’s exclusive crypto regulator with the mission to adopt a special crypto regulation regime in the country. This move came in a row of initiatives, launched by the country’s president Shavkat Mirziyoyev to provide the regulatory framework for crypto. In September 2018, Mirziyoyev signed a law prohibiting local firms from launching their crypto exchanges in Uzbekistan. The law only offered legal status to crypto exchanges established by foreign legal entities.