Saudi’s biggest oil exporter denied claims of involvement in Bitcoin mining activities but continues to bet on blockchain-focused businesses.
The Saudi Arabian Oil Company (Saudi Aramco) stirred interest among crypto enthusiasts last year after investing $5 million in blockchain-based oil trading company Vakt. While this move aimed to digitize and streamline post-trade processing, Saudi Aramco was also rumored to undertake Bitcoin (BTC) mining activities.
However, Saudi Arabia’s state oil company released an official statement to dismiss the ongoing rumors around mining Bitcoin. It said:
“With reference to recent reports claiming that the company will embark on Bitcoin mining activities, Aramco confirms that these claims are completely false and inaccurate.”
Many governments, including China, have recently unleashed a crackdown on home-grown crypto mining activities, forcing businesses to find refuge in other crypto-friendly countries.
On the other hand, Middle Eastern countries such as the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia continue to test the latest innovations around cryptocurrency. The Central Bank of Bahrain recently issued a license to an in-house crypto exchange for legally operating within the country.
Saudi Aramco has an extensive history of investing in blockchain firms. As reported by Cointelegraph, a Saudi Aramco Subsidiary was part of a $6-million deal with Data Gumbo Corp. for developing a commercial blockchain network.
Just last month, the Central Bank of the UAE announced its 2023–2026 strategy that highlighted concrete steps to experiment and launch an in-house digital currency. As a part of this initiative, the UAE government intends to implement a digital identity system “to bolster financial inclusion and easy access to financial services.”