Kosovo Crackdown on Miners Continues: Over 300 Crypto Mining Machines Seized

Kosovo’s Minister of Economy took to Twitter to argue that the confiscation of crypto mining machines will provide energy stability for Kosovo families as thousands of Euros monthly will be saved as a result of banning crypto mining. 

The Kosovo authorities have continued their raids on crypto miners, where more than 300 crypto mining machines have been seized on Saturday alone. 

On January 8, the Kosovo police officially announced that they had confiscated a total of 311  “Antminer” Bitcoin (BTC) mining machines, of which 39 were confiscated in Prishtina and the remainder (272) in the municipality of Leposavic.

In addition, the Kosovo police have also stopped a driver near Druar in the municipality of Vushtrri who was transporting 6 cryptocurrency mining machines with 42 GPUs. The driver was released after questioning. 

Artane Rizvanolli, Kosovo’s Minister of Economy tweeted to applaud the efforts of the Kosovo police by saying that thousands of Euros in taxpayer money is saved and the energy crisis is more manageable as a result of the raids. 

Back in December, Kosovo declared a 60-day state of emergency because of the power outages and energy crisis. The Minister of Economy announced on January 5 that a total crypto mining ban is imposed to stabilize the energy crisis. At the time being, 40% of Kosovo’s energy is imported. 

While many countries have rained crackdowns on crypto miners, the United States has become a beacon of mining operations. While Bitcoin (BTC) mining consumes 101 TWh annually, miners are evermore turning to renewables to carry out their mining operations. 

Per the Paypers, the Netherlands news platform, Kosovo has seen an increase in crypto mining operations for a while now. This rise has been noted in the Serb-majority northern municipalities where since the end of the war in 1999 were exempt from paying for electricity. 

However, KOSTT, the electricity network system operator officially confirmed in November of last year that free electricity will not be supplied to the 4 northern municipalities: Northern Mitrovica, Leposavic, Zubin Potok, and Zvecan. 

Kosovo is the most recent country to have imposed a crypto mining ban as a result of the energy crisis. Iran has banned legitimate crypto mining operations while raiding illicit ones. Kazakhstan has experienced internet outages and impacted Bitcoin (BTC) mining significantly since it is the second-largest country after the United States that facilitates operations of Bitcoin (BTC) miners. 

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