THE NEW YORK TIMES: Nearly 10 percent of the total energy output of Georgia – that’s the country, not the U.S. state – goes toward crypto mining. Spearheaded by miner manufacturer and tech developer Bitfury, much of the Eurasian nation’s population has shifted from more traditional industries tomining bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

Indeed, the country itself is betting on the benefits of cryptocurrencies, even as the market continues a year-long slide. The Times notes that Bitfury has already helped Georgia transfer its land registry data onto a blockchain platform, and the tax system comes next. 

Bitfury opened up shop in the country in 2015, receiving support from former Georgian prime minister Bidzina Ivanishvili, who gave the company a $10 million loan which has since been paid off. The government at the time also built “free economic zones,” providing the company tax-free electricity. Even the cryptocurrencies Bitfury sold weren’t taxed.

The Times’ deep dive outlines how a significant portion of the Georgian economy has shifted to mining cryptocurrencies. The company’s main representative and lobbyist in the nation, Remi Urumashvili, described mining as Georgia’s path to the future, saying “When you have a ticket to get onto the world map, you should use it.”

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