President Maduro Ups Petro’s Value Again to Build “New System”

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has once again hiked up the petro’s value this time to 36,000 sovereign bolivars. 

On January 14, the Venezuelan President introduced a “new monetary system” that included another increase in the national crypto and a higher minimum wage to combat “criminal dollar.” As the nation continues to struggle with hyperinflation, the South American country leader claimed the move would protect the bolivar.

“I want us to create a great alliance to produce and create new formulas of investment and financing,” President Maduro told the Constituent Assembly. He said he would increase the minimum wage by 300% to 18,000 bolivars a month and raise the petro’s value fourfold. The new monetary system will be based on the national cryptocurrency. The leader said his new measures would stabilize the economy.

However, it is not the only time the Venezuelan President made such pledges. He also increased the petro’s price last month, with civilians and experts alike expressing their skepticism, while the minimum wage was hiked up five times in 2018. There is still no wallet for the national crypto, the download links do not work, and the government continues to sell the cryptocurrency and issue purchase certificates. Venezuelans are still fleeing the nation’s dire economic situation.

President Maduro was slammed the last time he increased the minimum wage and raised the petro’s value. It was the same story now as Econometrica director Henkel Garcia said on Twitter:

“The announcement will exacerbate both hyperinflation and economic downturn. The monetary restriction that continues, both for banking and for companies, is very dangerous,” adding that “they try and try to give the petro circulation. They ignore that the use of a coin is a voluntary act and in which confidence plays an essential role.”

“There is no intention to rectify the direction of the economy so it will continue on its deteriorating path in 2019,” Ecoanalitica director Asdrubal Oliveros said. The leader of the opposition, Juan Guaido, also commented:

“Today, Nicolas Maduro mocks the Venezuelan people, once again, after taking economic measures that only bleed more in the pocket of Venezuelans,” noting that “the Venezuelan economy does not improve with an increase of the salary.”

Some Venezuelans also expressed their doubt on the petro’s potential to aid the economy. “It’s not even worth speaking about it. The whole thing is a sham – and the economy is doomed,” 23-year-old law student Rafael Gutierrez opined. Systems engineer and software developer Fabian Camacho added that “no one has and no one ever will have faith in the petro, nor Maduro’s economic knowledge.”