Venezuela: President Maduro Orders Top Bank to Have Transaction Counters for Petro

The president of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro, has ordered one of the country’s biggest banks to enable public access to the petro cryptocurrency.

The Venezuelan Ministry of Finance posted the news on Twitter July 3 at an event celebrating the Bank of Venezuela’s 10-year anniversary. The agency quoted Maduro as saying:

“I give the express order for transaction counters for The Petro to be opened in all Bank of Venezuela agencies [translated].”

Although no specifics are available at the moment, the move probably intends to enable BoV clients to buy and deposit petros.

The news marks the latest initiative by the president to influence Venezuelan agencies to increase adoption of the petro cryptocurrency.

Maduro introduced the petro in early 2018 in order to circumvent economic sanctions and has since mandated banks, as well as state-owned companies, to utilize the token, which is asserted to be pegged to the nation’s rich oil reserves.

Furthermore, he has ordered that passport processing payments should be done in petros. This would likely slow down the exodus of people from the troubled country since petros are not conveniently available to the public.

The petro has also been tied to the sovereign bolivar, the new fiat currency of the country. In addition, the token was even pegged to pension and salary systems.