Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko likes to make comments about various topics, and several days ago he talked about crypto mining. The country’s leader stated that Belarus has enough electricity to power crypto mining. It is possible to use abandoned industrial sites to generate revenue according to Lukashenko.
The country’s long-time leader mentioned crypto mining in his speech on August 27. He attended the opening ceremony of the Petrikovsky mining and processing plant. It is officially the largest investment project of state-owned Belaruskali. The U.S. government imposed sanctions on Belaruskali in August. It also imposed other punitive measures against the country’s leader.
The sanctions do not include Belarus Potash Company, whose supplies account for 20% of global potash trade. One of the world’s biggest producers of potash fertilizers owns a 48% stake in the company and the rest belongs to other state firms. The company ships potash mainly to China, India, and Brazil and competes with Canada’s Nutrien and Mosaic among others. It said that sanctions would lead to an increase in global potash prices and reduced availability of potash.
President Lukashenko’s latest call for crypto mining follows multiple efforts of the country’s government to move into the growing crypto mining industry. In February of 2021, the Ministry of Energy of the Republic of Belarus made an interesting announcement. The ministry was actively exploring the pros and cons of the industry. The crypto mining industry is growing around the world in countries like Canada, China, Russia, and the U.S. according to the ministry’s head Viktor Karankevic.
In 2019, Lukashenko proposed using excess energy from the nuclear power plant to mine cryptocurrencies. Two years earlier, he signed a decree on the development of the digital economy. The country legalized main crypto-related activities like mining, buying and selling, and trading crypto. The purpose of the legislation is to remove bureaucracy that could potentially hinder Blockchain’s implementation. A bill signed by Alexander Lukashenko also created a more crypto-friendly environment in the country.
The Republic of Belarus has its own analog of Silicon Valley called Belarus Hi-Tech Park (HTP). It operates on the principle of extraterritoriality. The companies registered in HTP have the ability to enjoy all the advantages provided, regardless of the location of their Belarusian office. HTP also benefited from Lukashenko’s position regarding crypto, as it has the ability to accumulate funds through initial coin offerings.
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