Venezuela poses a great example of how the government may fail in keeping the financial system afloat. Collapsed economy, hyperinflation, hunger and unemployment became a common part of the ugly picture in this country in recent years.
Withal, Venezuela is the leading country in terms of cryptocurrency adoption, and Bitcoin has already proved to be an efficient store of value and a means of payment for millions of Venezuelans.
Amid the success of cryptocurrencies, the central government has decided to introduce the first state-issued digital money in the world, dubbed El Petro (PTR) and pegged to alleged oil reserves. But with a little trust to President Maduro and no Petro found anywhere, global community thought it to be essentially fake.
However, Bitcoin.com portal has found evidence of El Petro’s existence. First, Venezuelans are able to purchase it through the government agency Sunacrip. It is notable that the government provides an option to exchange PTR for Bitcoin or Litecoin.
In addition, there is a bunch of state-sanctioned trading platforms that offer PTR, including Cryptoexca.io, Afx.trade, Amberes, Bancarexchange.io, Cryptiaexchange.com, and Criptolago.com.ve. To enter the trading service, a user must pass a strict KYC: a state-issued identification number, telephone number, bank statements, and invoices from private services showing a residential address.
Moreover, many locals accept PTR in exchange for goods in the specific Facebook-based “marketplace” groups called “El Perolero”.
For those who prefer direct trade, Telegram is the place for over-the-counter (OTC) chats where people can purchase and sell PTR peer-to-peer. Sort of identity check is usually required ― to interact with the dealer, a buyer needs to send him ID information, and a selfie with the document in hand and a handwritten paper with the date and time, all fully readable.
Even with the poor trading infrastructure for El Petro in place, the Maduro’s crypto is a reportedly stablecoin, but no supporting reserves are found by the public. It means that El Petro’s price is more imaginary, rather than durable.