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Tsvetana Paraskova

Tsvetana Paraskova

Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews. 

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Venezuela To Launch ‘Petro’ Cryptocurrency

In his latest stunt, Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro announced that the country wants to launch a cryptocurrency – the petro – backed by oil, diamonds and gold reserves

In his regular hours-long Sunday broadcast, Maduro said that the petro would help the country to “advance in issues of monetary sovereignty, to make financial transactions and overcome the financial blockade.”

Venezuela’s opposition lawmakers said the announcement of a cryptocurrency creation is a farce, and the plan may not be implemented at all.

“It’s Maduro being a clown. This has no credibility,” Angel Alvarado, an opposition lawmaker and economist told Reuters.

At the end of August, the U.S. stepped up its sanctions on Venezuela, prohibiting dealings in new debt or equity issued by PDVSA or the government, further complicating the country’s efforts to restructure its huge debt.

Maduro claims that those U.S. sanctions amount to “financial persecution”.

Closer U.S. scrutiny over transactions with Venezuela has resulted in slowing down some bond payments that the sovereign and the state oil firm PDVSA have had to make to avoid triggering calls for default, sources tell Reuters.

True to his ‘anti-imperialistic’ rhetoric, Maduro said last week that his country could stop selling its crude oil to the United States. Related: Iran’s Elaborate Sanction-Skirting Scheme

These comments come as the socialist president tightens his grip over Venezuela’s oil industry that accounts for 90 percent of the country’s currency revenues. A week ago, Maduro named a National Guard major general—Manuel Quevedo—as the new head of PDVSA and the country’s oil ministry. A few days later, Venezuela arrested the two recent former heads of the oil ministry and the state oil company for alleged corruption in the widening anti-graft crackdown.

PDVSA’s new boss Quevedo said on Sunday that the country would review oil service contracts as part of the corruption crackdown that many analysts see as Maduro’s pretext to sideline his political rivals.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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Leave a comment
  • RefMan on December 04 2017 said:
    So let me get this straight, the Bolivar is now almost completely worthless, and is now 100,000 to 1 US dollar. But at least you own a piece of paper with some pretty pictures on it, so now they want to replace that with something that doesn't even give you a piece of paper with a picture. Probably because they cannot get their hands on real currency because they have not been paying the people printing their currency for them.
  • Citizen Oil on December 05 2017 said:
    Wow this dictatorship is obviously just on the verge of collapse. They are sitting in a board room trying to figure out schemes to last another week at a time. I guess if you run out of real money, your very nervous investors are going to much prefer the idea of pretend internet money. Maybe the Winklevoss twins will donate their Bitcoin to the cause. You might be able to buy a toaster with it.
  • Georgie on December 05 2017 said:
    But the same goes for the dollar, Euro, Yen, Swiss Franc, Yuan etc., all pieces of paper not backed by gold.

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