Venezuela’s Nicolas Maduro Creates Agency to Supervise New State Cryptocurrency Petro

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has announced the creation of an agency called the Superintendence of the Venezuelan Cryptocurrency to supervise the trading of the country’s new cryptocurrency Petro.

The president recently launched the virtual currency that is supported by commodity reserves like gold, diamonds, and oil as a means to help overcome the US-led economic sanctions imposed against his administration.

Based on a report by local paper VTV, Maduro announced the creation of the new body in his speech during a public ceremony. In his speech, the leader announced that he is creating the superintendence to monitor and manage the direction of Petro.

“I announce the creation of the Superintendence of the Venezuelan Cryptocurrency and its relationship with the world, I create a special superintendence to govern the direction of Petro from Venezuela and the world.”

In his speech, Maduro also revealed that former President Hugo Chávez discussed with him the concept of a currency supported by oil reserves on several occasions. He added that he failed to act on it immediately because leaders with a ‘closed and obtuse mentality’ were against it then.

Maduro claimed that the creation of the Petro is a major step towards a better economy for the country. He also announced the appointment of Carlos Vargas, a member of the Constituent Assembly, as the head of the new agency.

“We are opening the doors to modernity, Venezuela once again becomes the showcase of the world. That dream of Commander Chávez, we are going to materialize it and we are going to turn it into the first cryptocurrency backed by the Venezuelan oil reserves, certified internationally.”

Several economists and opposition leaders, however, said that the Petro is just a strategy by Maduro to pay the country’s foreign creditors and to restructure its major debt burden. They argued that the move won’t help alleviate the worsening economic condition in the country.