So finally it has happened. We had reported earlier that Venezuelan government is planning to launch its own cryptocurrency, and that happened yesterday. The currency, dubbed Petro (PTR), is oil-backed, with 1 petro equaling one barrel of oil in Venezuelan reserves. With this launch Venezuela has become world’s first country to have a national cryptocurrency.
Right now 82.4 million PTR tokens are available for purchase on various exchanges, and they can be purchased with fiat currencies or other major cryptocurrencies out in the market. However, Venezuela’s official Bolivar currency can’t be used to purchase Petros.
To buy and trade in Petros you need to download a special Petro wallet on your smartphone, which has been developed by the Venezuelan government. Once downloaded, the wallet will generate an address for you in a fashion similar to any other wallet. You can then share that address with others to receive Petros in your wallet.
Venezuelan Economy in ICU: Can Petro Save it?
The Venezuelan economy, in case you don’t know, is in a downward spiral from quite some time. In last one year Bolivar’s value has dropped as much as 96%, and inflation is 4,115% in the country. Therefore, the government was looking for alternative ways to raise funds and save the economy. That’s what made the country launch its own cryptocurrency.
The government plans to attract foreign investment from various countries like Poland, Norway and Denmark with this move. It may also allow the tiny country to bypass American and European Union sanctions. Venezuelan cryptocurrency regulator said that country expects to attract investment from Qatar, Turkey and a number of other middle eastern countries with this new cryptocurrency. The country hopes to raise $6 billion with sale of Petros.
So can a cryptocurrency become the solution to country’s hyperinflation woes? It seems so, if President Nicolas Maduro is to be believed.
Petro Roaring on Exchanges
According to country’s President Mr. Nicolas Maduro, Petro is already roaring on the exchanges. Maduro today said on Twitter that PTR token has raised as much as $735 million within a day of its launch. If that’s true, it’s 2nd largest cryptocurrency raise ever after Telegram’s $850 million ICO. But even Telegram hadn’t touched this milestone within a single day – it took time to reach there. If Petros are already selling this way like hotcakes, it will be very interesting to see how quickly country reaches its desired $6 billion mark and creates history. The things are getting truly exciting from here.