More than 15 mining operations in Carabobo and Lara states remain offline.
Uncertainty rests on the bitcoin industry following the arrest of Joselit Ramírez.
Looking at the circumstances affecting the Bitcoin (BTC) industry operating in Venezuela, some members of the community are concerned that the local environment is as uncertain as it has been in the past.
The arrest for alleged corruption of Joselit Ramírez, former head of the National Superintendence of Cryptoactives and Related Activities (Sunacrip), it has spread to the cryptocurrency sector to the point where it is affecting its operations.
After Ramírez’s departure, Sunacrip was given responsibility for a restructuring committee chaired by Anabel Pereira Fernández, as previously reported by CriptoNoticias.
Based on this reorganization of the body, the new board should have been under the coordination of the Ministry of Economy, Finance and Foreign Trade (MPPEF). ordered to shut down all bitcoin mining farms in the country.
Uncertain prospects for digital mining in Venezuela
“So far they are more than 15 digital mining farms separately operating under a Sunacrip license in the state of Carabobo. It was also ordered to close all farms operating in Lara State,” José Ángel Álvarez, President of the National Association of Cryptocurrencies (Asonacrip), told CriptoNoticias.
The private organization opened a channel for digital miners to voice their views and concerns, which will later be submitted to the new Sunacrip board.
“From Asonacrip we declare that we do not agree with the closure of the digital mining farms ordered by Sunacrip. We have a work plan to prevent the measures taken from affecting us too much,” added Álvarez.
The closure of mining operations has become a shadow that now hangs over the sector. As a matter of fact, There are bitcoin miners who see a bleak outlook for the coming months. Because according to official information, the reorganization of Sunacrip would take about six months, with the possibility of an extension.
“We have 6 months of darkness ahead or more,” said one miner, who preferred to remain anonymous. He worries that farms will have to cover operating costs while they are closed and not producing.
In any case, the pessimism has not spread to the mining sector as a whole, as demonstrated by Kike Miner, who believes that the measure to “shut down mining farms should not last more than 30 days”.
“Some miners have received a statement that doesn’t say how long the farm will be shut down, but warns that ‘an order has been placed to shut it down for now’ and that they cannot do so until a new statement is received comes out turn it on again. Well, how damaging the measure can be to the industry, they told us the shutdown shouldn’t exceed a month. I believe that the MPPEF needs to find a mechanism to speed up Sunacrip’s restructuring and that the miners are not harmed as much.”
Kike Miner, Venezuelan miner.
A slowdown for the Venezuelan cryptocurrency industry
Not only the digital mining industry is affected by the consequences of the arrest of the former Sunacrip boss.
As previously reported by CriptoNoticias, The PetroApp has failed, as it does not process any pending transactions. Furthermore, the platform does not accept deposits in Bolivars, nor does it allow paying for public services through this platform.
So far there has been no official announcement from Sunacrip. CriptoNoticias is waiting for a response to a request for comments sent to this body and to the MPPEF.
On the other hand, the Restructuring Committee would also have ordered the shutdown of bitcoin exchanges and other cryptocurrencies operating under license in Venezuela.
“It is unfortunate and unfair that the entire Venezuelan cryptocurrency industry is caught up in an investigation related to specific events and specific individuals,” said Paulette Nunes, a lawyer specializing in crypto-asset-related issues.
“From a legislative point of view, the Venezuelan cryptocurrency sector should not be surrounded by uncertainty as the Presidential Decree setting out the Sunacrip restructuring is clear. That is, no change to the current regulatory legal framework in the country will be determined. Now, if you decide to make changes to the legislation, you would have to start with the founding decree.
Paulette Nunes, Cryptocurrency Attorney.
A sudden change of direction
The founding decree of the comprehensive system of crypto-assets mentioned by Paulette Nunes stipulates that security agents or Officials who obstruct mining activity can be fined with imprisonment of up to five years. In fact, this punishment is the most severe specified in the document.
This regulation had brought about an important change in the activity of bitcoin mining in Venezuela. From the point of view of several interviewees, this change introduced in the regulation has reduced a wave of device seizures, which in some cases violated fundamental rights.
Now, the environment for cryptocurrencies in Venezuela is uncertain again because, as in the past, there is a sudden drop today Change of direction with the measures ordered by the Sunacrip Restructuring Council.
In this sense, Nunes adds that it would be ideal for the new board to adhere to the regulations already in place and established; or, on the contrary, initiate the legislative process to amend the law.
“It would be right for Sunacrip’s restructuring council to maintain legal certainty, which in the end does not let the uncertainty cloud the panorama. To do this, it must stick to the existing regulations or create new regulations that will replace the previous regulations through appropriate legislative processes,” explained Nunes.