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posted by takyon on Thursday December 07, @05:43AM   Printer-friendly
from the petros-per-gallon dept.

Enter the 'petro': Venezuela to launch oil-backed cryptocurrency

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro looked to the world of digital currency to circumvent U.S.-led financial sanctions, announcing on Sunday the launch of the "petro" backed by oil reserves to shore up a collapsed economy. The leftist leader offered few specifics about the currency launch or how the struggling OPEC member would pull off such a feat, but he declared to cheers that "the 21st century has arrived!"

"Venezuela will create a cryptocurrency," backed by oil, gas, gold and diamond reserves, Maduro said in his regular Sunday televised broadcast, a five-hour showcase of Christmas songs and dancing. The petro, he said, would help Venezuela "advance in issues of monetary sovereignty, to make financial transactions and overcome the financial blockade."

Opposition leaders derided the announcement, which they said needed congressional approval, and some cast doubt on whether the digital currency would ever see the light of day in the midst of turmoil. The real currency, the bolivar, is in freefall, and the country is sorely lacking in basic needs like food and medicine.

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  • (Score: 2) by maxwell demon on Thursday December 07, @09:21AM (2 children)

    by maxwell demon (1608) Subscriber Badge on Thursday December 07, @09:21AM (#606728) Journal

    When you have the choice between a currency that loses value like crazy right now and a currency that will lose value like crazy some time in the future I think it can be a rational decision to get the latter. At least you'll have the chance to use some of it before the crash.

    BTW, the short form of bitcoin is "BTC", not "XBT".

    The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
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  • (Score: 3, Informative) by FatPhil on Thursday December 07, @09:49AM (1 child)

    by FatPhil (863) <{pc-soylent} {at} {}> on Thursday December 07, @09:49AM (#606742) Homepage
    When you're starving - adult Venezualans have lost on average 7kg per person in recent years - the cost-risk-benefit analysis actually starts to favour bloody revolution. (See CPG Grey's vid on Rulers, and his references.)

    The typical non-revolution solution is, however, just to use widely available paper money from elsewhere, the black market in Russia was perfectly happy to use what were referred to as "conventional units" for payment (yes, they were USD).

    XBT has been the ISO standardised code for the currency for *over 4 years*. BTC only made sense if you're in a bubble. BT is the prefix for what would be a Bhutanese currency (such as the BTN). X is the prefix for a currency without national control. If you want to treat it as if it's a global currency, it should follow globally-adopted rules for its currency code.
    The "free" in #freearistarchus is the "free" in "free jazz"
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday December 07, @02:42PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday December 07, @02:42PM (#606798)

      adult Venezualans have lost on average 7kg per person in recent years

      Not to mention all cats and dogs have vanished from the country. Meanwhile in the US the Communists here will claim the struggle is REAL.