BTC miner Marathon Digital partners with Kenya

BTC miner Marathon Digital partners with Kenya to monetize unutilized energy

US BTC block reward miner Marathon Digital (NASDAQ: MARA) has signed a deal with the Kenyan government to tap the country’s unutilized energy to mine digital assets.

Marathon inked the deal with Kenya’s Ministry of Energy and Petroleum “to support the utilization of energy and to optimize renewable energy projects.”

Under the partnership, the miner will provide the East African nation with policy, technical, and scientific support to better understand how it can optimize renewable energy sources. It will also form a joint steering committee with the ministry to guide the implementation of the company’s pledges.

“With projected foreign investments expected to exceed $80 million, this venture is poised to deliver economic benefits to the Kenyan economy and generate revenue for the local energy sector ecosystem,” the company said in a press release.

Data shows that over three-quarters of Kenya’s electricity is from renewable sources, with geothermal energy accounting for over 40%. The country also ranks as one of the producers of the cheapest geothermal energy along its Rift Valley region, making it a prime destination for miners.

“This agreement with the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum is a pivotal moment for our business as it provides us with a clear framework to pursue opportunities across the Republic of Kenya,” commented CEO Fred Thiel.

He added, “It demonstrates the innovative approach that Kenya is taking to optimize their energy usage and to enhance their technological infrastructure. We look forward to working closely with the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum, President William Ruto, and other Kenyan government leaders to drive progress through innovative and sustainable energy solutions.”

The agreement was signed during President Ruto’s state visit to the U.S., the first by an African leader in 16 years.

Ruto’s government has blown hot and cold with digital assets. Shortly after taking over two years ago, his administration aggressively pushed for high taxes on digital assets and NFTs but has yet to follow through with enforcement.

However, the government has recently been willing to involve industry stakeholders in finding the best way to police the sector. Late last year, lawmakers tapped the Blockchain Association of Kenya to help draft the country’s first digital asset regulatory framework.

Kenya’s neighbor Ethiopia has a head start with BTC mining, with Chinese miners flocking to the country over the past year for its cheap power and ideal climate. In February, the Ethiopian government signed a deal with a Hong Kong miner to inject $250 million into BTC mining.

Watch: Exchange corruption and CZ fines, COPA trial, Mining Bitcoin and Halving

YouTube video

New to blockchain? Check out CoinGeek’s Blockchain for Beginners section, the ultimate resource guide to learn more about blockchain technology.