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“For big problems, we need big solutions! Since the first few minutes, we started out doing well and are in the process of winning the battle: 4.777 billion yuan or $735 million dollars are the first figures from the public’s intention to buy the Petro!”
This was the tweet published by Nicolas Maduro, the President of Venezuela, on the first numbers from the ICO launched for the Petro; Venezuela’s new cryptocurrency that was created to bypass economic sanctions imposed by the US.
While there have been no official confirmations of these numbers from the Petro’s ICO, launched less than 24hrs before the tweet was posted, it is expected to perform extremely well. The Petro is predicted to do even better than Telegram, which managed to raise $850 million in less than 30 days.
The Ultimate Weapon Against Imperialism
Being the first cryptocurrency controlled by a government and backed by the country’s oil reserves, the Petro could end up taking off. The capital city of Caracas is already calling the ICO
a victory against American Imperialism. “We are taking a big step forward into the 21st century.”, said President Maduro during an interview with Reuters. “Today, a cryptocurrency is being born that could take on Superman.” Far from an ideological war, the resentment felt in Caracas has financial origins and is the result of successive sanctions imposed by the US against the country that have caused it to fumble into a financial crisis.
Caracas believes the Petro will bring a breath of fresh air to an economy devastated by hyperinflation, which has caused a depreciation of the Venezuelan Bolivar. Inflation in the country had exceeded 2610% at the end of 2017 and the Bolivar is now trading at 0.00004 USD.
On the Petro’s official website, the country’s capital said that it wants to make the Petro into “a tool to be used to create a free, stable and fair international system of finance.” In the cryptocurrency’s white paper, the project is presented as being the brain-child of the country’s ex-president, Hugo Chavez. However, in the white paper, it doesn’t give any technical information about the Petro. It clearly explains how the system will be guaranteed by the country’s oil reserves and its libertarian character, but, says nothing about what type of Blockchain will be used or whether the currency will be minable. Some reports have made mention of the Petro’s Blockchain
being a fork (or derivative) of Ethereum’s
, while others have reported that the Petro’s will use an alternative Blockchain known as NEM
Investors and the Law
We are left wondering who the first buyers of the Petro will be and Maduro’s use of the Yuan, China’s national currency, leaves a lot of room for speculation. For the US Treasury Department’s, they have formally released a warning to all those who purchase the Petro that they will have violated US law. The Venezuelan opposition has been quite active in trying to counteract warnings from the US, who had, earlier this year, compared the project to mortgaging the entire country’s wealth, which violates the American constitution.
The Petro’s success could very well pave the way for other even bigger projects. Caracas has made mentions of a cryptocurrency used exclusively by member countries of OPEC, which includes all oil-producing countries. This seems especially likely since, for nearly ten years, these countries have been suffering from falling oil prices.
A danger to Venezuelans
Big brother watches over his people. When a government decides to include control over crypto-currencies, the best way to do is to set up a non-anonymous Blockchain that will control it.
Petro will allow the Venezuelan regime to have better control over crypto-currencies furthering at the heart of its country, at the expense of citizens ' freedom.
We are very far from the dream of the libertarians who were the first to adopt the cryptographic currencies.
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