The President of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro stated as of Friday, January 5th that he was moving forward with his oil-backed cryptocurrency in the coming days. He has stated that the country will issue around 100 million units of the oil-backed currency, but it is unclear as to whether or not investors will use it to buy “petro” at any given time. The member of OPEC, has gone through a hard economic crisis over the past few years that has left his new government with not a lot of credibility.
As a socialist, Maduro has stated that the cryptocurrency will occur, with skepticism from the populous as well as his own government. The launch of the new cryptocurrency is said to be backed by the country’s oil, gas, gold and diamond reserves, as a way to circumvent the restriction put on the country by the US and other countries. These restrictions have hurt the access for the country to world banks and so on. Maduro stated during the same speech that the currency would be pegged in value to the country’s oil basket, which as of this week was averaging at around $59.07 per barrel according to the oil ministry.
There is still a large amount of confusion circling the coin as to whether or not it will work. Those who oppose the plan have already created a new plan to fall into place if this one fails, which would help the millions who are struggling with food insecurity and general poverty. Maduro has stated that the currency will help usher the country into the 21st century, and help boost the economy within the nation, but many remain skeptical. The hopes are high that this new currency can help the people of the country who need it the most.