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UAE Emerges as Bitcoin Mining Powerhouse, Led by Abu Dhabi’s Sovereign Wealth Fund

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  • Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund has propelled the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to new heights in Bitcoin mining, establishing the country as a major player in the crypto space.
  • The fund’s digital asset arm, Zero Two, collaborates with local and international partners to set up large-scale mining farms, further solidifying the UAE’s position in the industry.

UAE’s Ascent in the Bitcoin Mining Sphere

In the Bitcoin mining ecosystem, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has recently emerged as a formidable participant, primarily propelled by Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund. This strategic maneuver has metamorphosed the UAE into a thriving center for Bitcoin mining, capitalizing on the country’s political stability, entrepreneurial fervor, and bountiful energy resources.

Jaran Mellerud, Business Development Associate at Luxor, provided insights into the enthralling journey of the UAE’s mining expansion, primarily steered by Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund.

Driving Collaborations and Massive Mining Operations

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Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund, through its digital asset subsidiary, Zero Two, initiated a significant partnership with local Bitcoin mining company, Phoenix Technology, in late 2021. The alliance culminated in an immense 650 MW hydro-cooled mining farm in Abu Dhabi. With a staggering investment of $2 billion, it earned the recognition as the largest single Bitcoin mining site globally.

The fund’s ambitious endeavors did not end there. In February 2023, Zero Two partnered with the esteemed US public miner, Marathon, leading to the creation of two immersion-cooled facilities in Abu Dhabi, jointly capable of 250 MW. Of this capacity, Zero Two controls 200 MW, with Marathon overseeing the remaining 50 MW.

Pioneering the Bitcoin Mining Landscape

These bold initiatives have positioned the UAE as the leading Bitcoin mining nation in the Middle East. Despite neighboring countries possessing substantial energy resources, it is the UAE’s innovative prowess that cements its prime position in the industry.

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While the abundance of energy resources in the UAE has contributed significantly to its mining superiority, the nation’s dedication to extending its electricity supply has further fortified its dominance. The UAE, being an OPEC member and a top oil producer globally, has capitalized on its standing to diversify its energy sources.

These measures have led to the inauguration of Barakah, the Arab world’s largest nuclear power plant, supplying an estimated 19% of the country’s electricity. Plans for a vast solar buildout are also in motion, aimed at harnessing the power of the UAE’s extensive, sunlit deserts.

The Interplay of Bitcoin Mining and Energy Flexibility

The combination of Bitcoin mining and the UAE’s expanding electricity supply holds immense potential. As uniquely flexible electricity consumers, Bitcoin miners can offer vital demand flexibility to inflexible nuclear-powered grids.

Mellerud concluded by emphasizing the UAE’s rapid expansion of its electricity supply, a pace that other consumers, notably in North America and Europe, could only aspire to. He predicts that the UAE will increasingly become a critical Bitcoin mining country in the forthcoming years, potentially serving as a case study for other Middle Eastern nations to emulate.


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Brian Johnson
Brian Johnson
A dedicated Bitcoin journalist passionate about uncovering the latest trends, developments, and innovations in the world of cryptocurrency, while delivering engaging and well-researched articles to inform and educate readers on the dynamic digital finance landscape.
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