United States blocks use of Venezuela's digital currency: White House

Elias Hubbard
March 19, 2018

President TrumpDonald John TrumpAccuser says Trump should be afraid of the truth Woman behind pro-Trump Facebook page denies being influenced by Russians Shulkin says he has White House approval to root out "subversion" at VA MORE on Monday levied new sanctions against the Venezuelan government, banning US citizens from dealing in the South American country's newly minted cryptocurrency. The executive order says that Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro is trying to avoid USA sanctions against Venezuela with this new cryptocurrency.

As of today, USA citizens, residents and companies can't buy or sell Petro.

The cryptocurrency is created to get around sanctions placed on the country's cross-border transactions.

In January, the U.S. Treasury Department warned that the "petro" cryptocurrency could violate sanctions against the OPEC nation's socialist government.

Trump and other critics have claimed the Petro, backed by Venezuela's oil reserves - the largest in the world - is unreliable.

While the government has published multiple whitepapers, it's still unclear if Petro is based on the Ethereum blockchain or NEM blockchain.

Venezuelan Constitutional Assembly member, Diosdado Cabello, however, rejected the sanctions, explaining that "the enormous difference is that the Petro has a tangible backup, oil".

Venezuela now faces an economic collapse combined with hyperinflation.

So turning to cryptocurrencies could be a smart move when your bank notes aren't worth anything.

Despite Trump's ban, other countries under United States sanctions, including Russian Federation and Iran, have also expressed interest in setting up their own cryptocurrencies, according to Brookings.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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