The Kosovo government has adopted measures specifically designed to maintain its energy supply in the coming months, including a ban on cryptocurrency mining. The move comes amid a sharp increase in import prices and the restrictions could be extended for up to six months.
Kosovo authorities reimpose ban on cryptocurrency mining
The Kosovo executive has approved certain steps to ensure adequate power supplies to homes and businesses over the coming weeks and months. The TASS news agency reported that the government published the special decree in Pristina this week.
The measures taken by the Council of Ministers include helping families to meet their heating needs, supporting the network operator in the country to ensure the security of electricity distribution, as well as efforts to reduce consumption by all institutions.
Banning the use of electric power to produce digital currencies was also included as a necessary step. Power-hungry industrial activity came to a halt for the first time last winter, when the partially recognized republic in southeastern Europe was facing shortages.
The government made it clear that it had introduced “emergency measures” in connection with the current global energy situation, ie the sharply rising rates at which Kosovo imports its energy and a possible ban on the export of fossil materials from some European countries. The latter may lead to a further increase in prices.
The Kosovo authorities insisted in a statement that their main motive is not only to ensure adequate supplies of energy during the winter season but also to protect the public interest. The measures, including the mining ban, have been imposed for an initial period of two months, but ministers will be able to extend them for up to 180 days with a majority vote.
Besides suspending crypto mining last year, the government has also hunted down the operators of illegal mining facilities, seizing hardware in a number of police raids, including hundreds of mints from underground crypto farms.
The campaign threatened to stoke ethnic tensions in the small country as the Albanian-led central government has targeted Serb-majority areas in the north where consumers have been refusing to pay their electricity bills for more than two decades because they are unaware of Pristina’s power.
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