During an exclusive interview with CriptoTendenica, Jesús Oviedo, a Sunacrip official, assured that Bitcoin mining in Venezuela is a right for any citizen. He stressed that work is being done to eradicate cases of police abuse against miners. At the same time, he stressed that the best way to do this is through legalization.
The National Superintendence of Crypto Assets and Related Activities (Sunacrip), is the regulatory body for mining activity in the South American country. It was created with the purpose of harmonizing the digital mining industry with the energy capacities of that nation.
Cryptocurrency mining has been legal in Venezuela since 2018. Low energy costs have allowed the country to quickly enter the top 10 nations with the highest hash power. However, the process has been bitter for many entrepreneurs, who have been harmed by extortionists.
Are there guarantees for the Bitcoin mining business in Venezuela?
For Jesús Oviedo, director of Sunacrip’s liaison office in the central region of Venezuela, Bitcoin mining is a right. However, the illegality of a large part of the miners makes them easy prey for crime. «We know of the cases of police abuse against miners, but if they are not legalized, there is little we can do to help them», Expressed Oviedo.
In that sense, he assured that they are working closely with duly registered miners to promote the legalization of their colleagues. He explains that legality is a difficult step to take, considering that mining was penalized for many years in the country. The feeling of secrecy is still latent, he considers, «and it is something that we understand, but now we tell the miners that they have nothing to fear.
The State does not persecute the miners, he explains, but, on the contrary, «you want them to continue mining, but in accordance with the legal framework». Many miners have equipment in residential or commercial areas. This negatively affects its environment, that is why we cannot allow Bitcoin mining in these types of areas, he stressed.
However, he affirms that it is a problem that has a solution. «The important thing is that they come out of hiding so that they continue to mine their coins with total freedom and in accordance with the laws», He expressed.
Illegal mining harms the miner and their environment
In Venezuela, there are abundant cases of outrages against those who dedicate themselves to Bitcoin mining. One of the reasons, in Oviedo’s opinion, is the illegality of the miners. A mining farm in underground conditions, in legal terms, means that its owners are stealing a service that belongs to the nation.
Despite this, the interviewee explains, Sunacrip is not unleashing «a witch hunt». «On the contrary, we are reaching out to the miners so that in the future they are not punished by justice», He remarked. At the time, he added that «this is the right time to get out of illegality».
Another important aspect highlighted by the official is that a person illegally mining is the target of criminals. It also causes problems in your environment for various reasons. For example, it is likely that 3 or 4 machines in a house, can collapse the community transformer not designed for industrial activities. This is one of the many negative consequences of illegality.
On the other hand, he says that catching up will allow the miner to contribute to the nation with taxes and bill payments. They will not jeopardize your income in the long run, he stressed.
Our goal is to stop police abuse
Police abuses, in regards to Bitcoin mining, by police officials from different State bodies, are common in Venezuela. In various portals, it has been shown that police officers and officials from different agencies obtain “juicy vaccines” from miners.
In that sense, Oviedo assures that they are working hard to address these complaints and punish corrupt officials. «There are numerous cases of police abuse, but the miners do not report due to their illegality. They think that it is better to pay the extortionist than to be discovered by the authorities and that is a serious mistake». It highlights that courses are being given to police officers on legal aspects «so they understand that mining is no longer a crime».
It is an issue in which progress is being made rapidly, he explains. He adds that in a short time, police abuses against Bitcoin mining in Venezuela will come to an end. For this, he insists, the collaboration of the miners is essential.
To reinforce this measure, Oviedo remarked that they will soon put up a telephone line to respond to complaints of police outrage in real time. He recalled that no official of police agencies «Whatever it is, it is empowered to seize equipment or detain miners for mining cryptocurrencies». To retain equipment, the official must have an endorsement from Sunacrip. Otherwise, you are committing a crime against the right to private property of a citizen, he stressed.
Streamlining the process
The pandemic conditions and the crisis of lack of fuel in Venezuela, are a difficult obstacle to overcome for the miners. Jesús Oviedo assures that the creation of the liaison office in the city of Valencia brings Sunacrip closer to the center of the country.
Bitcoin mining is a new business and it has a very changing reality. He explains that in Sunacrip every effort is being made to serve a large number of miners who wish to become legal. «We are giving all the support and we do not rest in our task», He declared.
Likewise, Sunacrip reported that working meetings are held with miners and police forces every Friday. Their objective is to give greater stability to the business. At the same time, it works closely with the state electricity company (Corpoelec). With the latter, the elimination of bureaucratic obstacles for people who seek to give the business legality is evaluated.
This Friday, for example, an important meeting was held in the city of Valencia, in which support for miners in the process of legalization was planned.