Oman Aims to be Middle East Bitcoin Hub with $1.1B Mining Investment

Oman Aims to be Middle East Bitcoin Hub with $1.1B Mining Investment

The Middle East has always acted as a friend of the crypto industry, and one more country is making headlines this time by investing $1.1 billion in Bitcoin mining.

H.E. Sheikh Mansour Bin Taleb Bin Ali Al Hinai, Chairman of Oman’s Authority for Public Services Regulations, has publicly said that his government supports the Bitcoin mining facility.

Also read: Rain Crypto Secures UAE License for Virtual Asset Services

Al Hinai believes that the billion-dollar initiative aligns with its goal to diversify our economy by integrating modern technologies while upholding its “commitment to ethical and sustainable practices.”

After extensive regulatory discussions that began in 2019, the conservative government of Oman ultimately deemed bitcoin mining compatible with Islamic law.

“Our project transcends the boundaries of traditional mining data centers. By synergizing purpose-built hardware, hyperscale abilities, and smart energy consumption,” said Jad Fredrick Kharma, the CEO of Exahertz.

The company is “building a robust framework that is both innovative and sustainable, in line with Oman’s 2040 vision,” according to Kharma.

Homegrown startup unveils 11MW Bitcoin mining pilot site

In September 2022, Exahertz, a homegrown startup, obtained its license from local regulators and swiftly launched an operational 11 MW pilot bitcoin mining site within just 22 days.

The company’s bold vision includes scaling up to an impressive 800 MW capacity in the future, according to the Economy Middle East.

Exahertz has constructed its facilities in a modular design, allowing seamless scalability to accommodate the electrical grid’s needs while preventing overload.

Additionally, the company has received approval for initiatives to harness wasted flared gas and explore fresh hydro energy sources.

“Our blueprint for future expansion prioritizes ecocentric operations. Utilizing gas flares and hydro energy underscores our dedication to fostering a green, sustainable digital economy,” said Kharma in an interview.

Bitcoin is beyond digital currency

The Exahertz boss believes that Bitcoin is not just a digital currency but has a digital ecosystem within it.

“Bitcoin represents more than a digital currency, its open ledger system is a significant leap for civilization, ushering in a new era of transparency and innovation,” said Kharma.

Growing crypto dominance in the Middle East

The Middle East has been a big player in the crypto space in recent years, with the UAE and Bahrain being the forerunners.

Popular names in the industry like Binance, Bybit, and Bitget, have offices in the UAE and are planning expansion in the region.

The competition within the region to become the crypto hub has further flourished the industry within oil-rich countries.

UAE saw a 400% rise in crypto businesses (2020-2022), driving 10% of global trade. Institutional adoption is strong, with partnerships involving Majid Al Futtaim, Jebel Ali Resorts, and blockchain integration in courts. Blockchain education surged by 300%, and the region contributed to 8% of global crypto mining in 2022.

Binance-Mastercard crypto card partnership to an end

The crypto industry is expanding within the Middle East region; however, Binance will end its crypto card programmes in Bahrain along with Argentina, Brazil, and Colombia on September 22.

Mastercard has also tied up with Gemini, another crypto exchange but this decision will not impact other card programmes, per Reuters.

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