Armenia intends to become a Bitcoin mining hub

The post-Soviet nation has taken a favourable position towards cryptocurrency but mainly depends on imported energy.

At the end of August, a digital platform known as ECOS Free Economic Zone offered positive news from Armenia, a nation that seldom garners attention on the global crypto map. Since 2018, ECOS has claimed to add 60 megawatts (MW) of capacity to its power plant-based facilities.

The mining operation located near one of the Hrazdan river’s hydropower facilities receives its energy straight from the high-voltage grid and utilises the site’s infrastructure to power containers. Representatives of the platform claimed that ECOS might contribute 200 megawatts of clean power. Comparatively, the Berlin Geothermal plant in El Salvador gives away 1.5MW of the 102MW it generates to cryptocurrency miners, while the Greenidge Generation facility on the shore of Seneca Lake in New York should have generated around 44MW.

Given the controversies surrounding crypto mining laws in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) — nations of the former Soviet Union — it may be time to evaluate the industrial potential of this 1,850-meter-high post-Soviet republic.

The most definite crypto-related truth about Armenia is that we get little information from the nation. In 2018, the Armenian Blockchain Association joined its counterparts from Switzerland, Kazakhstan, Russia, China, and South Korea in bringing a class action lawsuit against digital titans such as Google, Twitter, and Facebook for prohibiting crypto-related advertising. The lawsuit’s future is uncertain, despite the fact that prohibitions on crypto advertisements have been eased in recent years.

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan and other senior officials allegedly attended the inauguration ceremony of a new mining farm that boasted of becoming one of the biggest in the world in the same year. The building of the farm with 3,000 Bitcoin (BTC) and Ether (ETH) mining machines with a potential capacity of 120,000 costs an estimated $50 million, according to local media.

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