Cubans use cryptocurrency as a substitute for services they wouldn’t otherwise be able to access, such as international shopping, mobile and internet top-up services, and even sending and receiving remittances. As a result, cryptocurrency has developed to a notable level of functionality in Cuba. However, it is difficult for cryptocurrency mining to achieve the same level of popularity.
Although cryptocurrency mining was once viewed as a wise investment by Cubans, this notion has been destroyed by the current state of the country’s power grid, which puts mining operations in danger due to the nation’s frequent blackouts. A small-scale cryptocurrency miner named Raydel González who constructed his own equipment described the challenges that exist in the nation today to Cubanet. He declared:
“I, like many others, had invested a lot of money in cryptocurrency mining equipment that is not cheap. With the advent of blackouts, cryptocurrency mining in Cuba is unsustainable.”
In order to maintain their operations, other miners like Eduardo Gomez invested in power plants, but the lack of gas has also made it challenging for these off-grid operations to be financially viable. Gonez explained that despite making a $5,000 investment, he is still unable to generate income.
Telecommunications Affected as Well
But even miners who have been able to operate their businesses independently by securing a steady supply of gas to run their plants are feeling the effects of the problem. This is because the local telecom grid is also being affected by these blackouts, and the limited plant capacity used by Etectsa, the local Cuban telecom company, makes it impossible to operate.
This issue was brought to light in June, at a time when company officers were already dealing with related problems. An unnamed Etecsa employee at the time said:
“Etecsa’s generators are running out of fuel to support so many hours of blackouts. The plants are not capable of generating all the energy necessary to keep so much equipment on for so long and that is why everything works incorrectly.”