According to a statement by the government newspaper Official Gazette published on April 9, Venezuelan cryptocurrency “petro”, provided by oil, should become legal tender within 120 days for all transactions made by state institutions – from ministries to airports, Bloomberg reports.
In addition, the Official Gazette says that the government will become the sole regulator of all crypto assets, and the newly created national Cryptocurrency Treasury will be responsible for regulating all crypto activity – from issue to trading. In another statement published on Tuesday, the Venezuelan government reported that Abrahan Landaeta will become head of the Cryptocurrency Treasury, and Anthoni Camilo Torres is the chief in virtual currencies.
The decree is intended to facilitate the use of “petro”, but there are certain obstacles to implementing this policy – the main aspects of the Venezuelan cryptocurrency are still kept secret, and many rating sites have already called it a scam. Last month, President Nicolas Maduro said that Venezuela had already received offers to buy tokens worth $5 billion from several countries, including China, Russia and Mexico – but no evidence has been provided so far.
With the help of “petro” Venezuela hopes to benefit from global blockchain fever, as well as to withdraw its economy from a severe recession, which is accompanied by a rapid fall in the rate of the main Venezuelan currency. According to the IMF forecast, by the end of the year, inflation in Venezuela will reach 13,000%, and the country’s GDP will decrease by 15%.
Last week Maduro delivered a speech in which he said that Venezuela had bought 30 ambulances with the help of “petro”. In order to accelerate the adoption of the “petro” by the citizens of the country, the government launched the national register of miners and opened the so-called “petro zones” – they will accept Venezuelan cryptocurrency and settle in tourist destinations along the western border of the country.