Iran bypasses sanctions with bitcoin

26.05.2021 |

Iran has long been under international sanctions from the United States and its allies, which prevents the country from taking an active part in cross-border trade, and the state’s accounts in foreign banks are currently blocked. However, the government has found a way out of a seemingly stalemate. Bitcoin came to the rescue, one of the main advantages of which is the absence of a single issuer and the possibility of direct control or intervention in transactions by third parties.

Iran currently accounts for up to 5% of all bitcoin network computing capacity, generating up to one billion dollars a year. The total consumption of the mining sites reaches up to 600 MW, generating additional domestic income for the country’s population. If we translate electricity into oil terms, then about 4% of pre-sanctioned exported raw materials are needed to produce the first cryptocurrency. Thus, Iran manages to pay for goods in the international market and replace exports by the production of other, in this case digital gold, goods inside the country that cannot be sanctioned.

Most notably, according to the analytical report, most of the fees received by the miners for securing transactions were paid by companies and investors from the United States, whose previous president both withdrew from the Iran nuclear deal and renewed sanctions pressure.