The world's most expensive bitcoin core (BTC) price is in Iran. A combination of high foreign currency demand, economic sanctions and an improved regulatory environment – with some speculation – have sent the price of the leading digital currency skywards. How high can it go?
Falling Rial, New Policy Spur Iran Bitcoin Bull Market
The price of BTC in Iran rose sharply on Wednesday after the government of President Hassan Rouhani approved plans to mainstream bitcoin mining – and as the local currency nosedived.
BTC hit a world record $24,000 on the Iranian exchange EXIR, eclipsing its previous high of $20,000, as investors piled into the digital currency in search of a safe haven against the falling rial.
EXIR tweeted that "bitcoin bull markets already started in Iran as rial price goes down against USD." The rial is trading at around 138,000 against the US dollar on the streets of Tehran, according to a Reuters report, about 230 percent above the official rate of around 42,000.
Iran Embraces Cryptocurrency Mining
On Tuesday Iran announced that it will officially start to recognise the mining of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as an industry within three weeks. The Central Bank of Iran, which overseas foreign exchange and monetary policy, is to draft a policy framework for the industry, said Abolhassan Firouzabadi, Secretary of Iran's Supreme Council of Cyberspace.
Firouzabadi told IBENA – a specialised news agency in banking and economy, which is affiliated to the Central Bank of Iran – that deepening the use of cryptocurrencies is envisaged to smooth trade between Tehrain and its partners, especially in the wake of renewed US sanctions. "But the final policy for legislating it (crypto mining) hasn't been declared yet," said IBENA.